Lighting Future: Compact Fluorescent Lamps

Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFLs) have emerged as one of the most environmentally prudent indoor-lighting options. They use one-quarter to one-fifth the electricity of incandescent bulbs, and can last about 10 times longer. Switching to CFLs is the most cost-effective way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to a McKinsey & Company analysis.

By saving energy, greater CFL usage also results in less coal-based power generation. This is important when considering that the roughly 2 tons of mercury contained in the 380 million CFLs sold in the United States last year was dwarfed by the 50 tons of mercury that U.S. coal plants emitted into the atmosphere.

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