CFLs save energy but at what cost to our health and the environment? Do you honestly think that everybody is going to dispose of them properly? Also, they may contain less mercury than other products but because of the number of bulbs used and eventually discarded, there will be far more mercury in the environment than at present.

Where is everybody’s common sense?

You bring up an important point about CFLs and their mercury content. It is important that we dispose of our CFLs properly, particularly our tube fluorescent lighting. Depending on your energy mix (here in Maryland, we’re still pretty coal-reliant on our grid), the mercury impact may be less by using the CFL bulbs. All this being said, the energy efficiency world is very excited to see the drop in price of LEDs. For instance, some local hardware stores, with the help of our EmPOWER Maryland energy efficiency incentives, have LED bulbs for less than $10, or even lower. LEDs are even more efficient, last longer, are dimmable, immediately light up, and do not have the mercury of fluorescent bulbs. To get the best quality bulb, we recommend looking for the ENERGY STAR Label – this ensures 3rd party certification and high quality manufacturing!