Energy Conservation & Efficiency

Illinois advances bill for more efficient light bulbs

Fluorescent bulbs
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On one of the last days of the 2024 spring legislative session, the Illinois General Assembly passed the Clean Lighting Act. This bill is a good move for the environment, public health and consumer’s pocketbooks.

Once signed into law by Governor Pritzker, fluorescent lighting would be replaced over time with highly efficient LED bulbs, saving Illinois consumers more than $1.5 billion on utility bills, avoiding 2.2M metric tons of C02 emissions by cutting energy waste, and avoiding 419 lbs of mercury pollution by 2050, according to analysis by the Appliance Standards Awareness Project.

Modern LED light bulbs — readily available as replacements for fluorescents in all needed shapes and sizes — cut energy use in half compared to fluorescents. Switching to these more efficient lights will mean less energy is wasted and will save consumers money.

Phasing out outdated fluorescent lights is also a win for our health. By design fluorescent lights contain mercury, a potent neurotoxin. Three in four fluorescent lamps are improperly disposed of, leaving those who work in our waste streams potentially vulnerable to overexposure.

The legislation was championed by Rep. Nick Smith in the House and Sen. Adriane Johnson in the Senate. The bill is now headed to Governor J.B. Pritzker’s desk.

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