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In Brief

Americans Hoard Light Bulbs As Ban Nears

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(Image credit: Light bulb idea image via <a href=""target="_blank" >Shutterstock</a> )

If you're like many Americans — nearly 60 percent of those surveyed in a recent poll — you may not have heard that 40-watt and 60-watt incandescent light bulbs will soon vanish from stores, beginning in 2014. After Jan. 1, it will be illegal to manufacture or import these bulbs, which account for half of all standard light bulb sales, according to news reports. But stores will be allowed to continue selling what they have in stock.

Refusing to have these familiar light bulbs cut out of their lives, some Americans are hoarding these products, according to a survey by lighting company Osram Sylvania, USA Today reported (opens in new tab). But two-third said they have seen the light, and plan to switch to new more efficient options; another 59 percent welcome the efficiency shift.

The change was mandated by a 2007 law, derided by some as a "light bulb ban," that will shift the country toward more efficient incandescents that use 28 percent less energy, as well as CFLs (compact fluorescent lamps) and LEDs (light emitting diodes) that use at least 75 percent less, USA Today noted.

"We have witnessed more lighting innovation in the last five years than we have over the past 100," said Noah Horowitz, senior scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group, according to USA Today.

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Douglas Main loves the weird and wonderful world of science, digging into amazing Planet Earth discoveries and wacky animal findings (from marsupials mating themselves to death to zombie worms to tear-drinking butterflies) for Live Science. Follow Doug on Google+.