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Ikea drops incandescent bulbs

In a couple of weeks it will start to get harder to find incandescent light bulbs at Ikea.

IKEA buys London site for housing development
'Ikea doesn’t sell furniture; it sells experience'

The Swedish furniture and home decor retailer, which has more than 300 stores in 37 countries -- including one at 450 Sargent Drive in New Haven -- has announced plans to phase out incandescent bulbs in its U.S. stores, starting Aug. 1.

The company aims to remove all incandescent lights from store shelves nationwide by Jan. 1, a move Ikea claims will make it the first retailer to completely stop carrying them.

The retailer has undertaken several other "green" initiatives in recent years, such as charging a small fee for plastic bags at the checkout registers, urging customers instead to opt for reusable bags. In early 2007, stores began charging customers 5 cents for each plastic bag.

In 2001, Ikea became the first retailer to offer consumers a safe way to recycle compact fluorescent bulbs.

"We also believe our customers are looking for everyday environmentally responsible solutions for themselves," Mike Ward, Ikea's U.S. president said in a statement.

"Eliminating incandescents is a simple way to lead the charge for Ikea customers to use energy-saving light bulbs, thus reducing energy consumption and reducing the amount of greenhouse gases," he said. "It's a little step with a big impact on our planet."

The move comes ahead of federal legislation that will start to phase out the sale of incandescent light bulbs in 2012.

Ikea's decision has been praised by environmentally focused groups including the World Wildlife Fund and the Alliance to Save Energy.

"By only putting good options on the shelf, retailers can make it easy for customers to do the right thing, in this case reduce their energy use and impact on the environment," Jason Clay, senior vice president of markets at the World Wildlife Fund, said in a statement.

Consumers have other options aside from incandescent bulbs, such as compact fluorescent and LED bulbs. Also, this fall, Ikea will begin selling halogen bulbs that can be used in standard light sockets.

According to www.EnergyStar.gov, the government program that promotes energy efficiency, compact fluorescent bulbs last six to 10 times longer than incandescent ones and use 80 percent less energy.

Ikea estimates that halogen bulbs use 30 percent less energy than conventional ones and last two to four times longer, while LED lights use 70 percent less energy and last 20 times longer.

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To see more of New Haven Register, or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.nhregister.com. Copyright (c) 2010, New Haven Register, Conn. Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

Last Updated (Tuesday, 13 July 2010 16:40)

 

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