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White House announces new US lighting standards

White House announces new US lighting standards

President Barack Obama was seeking to keep the focus on climate change legislation and show quick action on energy on Monday by announcing new national efficiency standards for lamps and lighting equipment.
At an afternoon White House event Monday, the president and Energy Secretary Steven Chu also were disclosing that $346 million of the $787 billion economic stimulus measure would be used for an initiative to improve energy efficiency in new and existing commercial buildings.
The White House added the event to the president's schedule at the last minute, just three days after the House of Representatives narrowly approved the first energy legislation ever designed to curb global warming. The measure's fate is less certain in the Senate, where Democrats lack the 60 votes needed to block a certain filibuster, a delaying tactic on unlimited debate that can kill legislation if effective.
Still, in an interview with a small group of reporters, the president's top energy adviser, Carol Browner, said: "I am confident that comprehensive energy legislation will pass the Senate." She repeatedly refused to say when the White House expected the Senate to pass the measure, and she would not speculate whether Obama would have legislation sent to his desk by the end of the year.
The White House is working to keep energy in the spotlight even as Congress takes a break this week for the July 4 U.S. Independence Day holiday. Obama has spent the past few days pressuring the Senate to follow the House while also seeking to show that the administration is making quick, clear progress on overhauling the energy profile in the United States without legislation.
In February, the president directed the Energy Department to update its energy conservation standards for everyday household appliances such as dishwashers, lamps and microwave ovens. Laws on the books already required new efficiency standards for household and commercial appliances. They have been backlogged, however, in a tangle of missed deadlines, bureaucratic disputes and litigation.
Obama said in February: "This will save consumers money, this will spur innovation, and this will conserve tremendous amounts of energy,"
The administration already has released new standards on commercial refrigeration.
Lamps were next.
The administration says 7 percent of all energy consumed in the United States is for lighting, and the new standards, which will take effect in 2012, will cover fluorescent and incandescent lamps and lighting equipment in households and commercial buildings.
The White House says the changes will save enough electricity from 2012 through 2042 to power every home in the United States for up to 10 months, and will result in an annual savings for consumers of between $1 billion to $4 billion over that 30-year period.


Updated : 2021-04-15 07:05 GMT+08:00