A Department of Energy audit released this week reported that the agency is
still buying and using incandescent light bulbs
, one year before federal law is due to begin banning the bulbs from the market. The
New York Times
' Green blog noted the failure.
The department has been slow to replace bright but energy-intensive incandescent bulbs with ugly and toxic compact fluorescent ones, which use less electricity and give off inadequate light. Last year, the department's own Energy Star program concluded that unless systematic bribes were kept in place, Americans would continue to reject the compact fluorescent gadgets in favor of honest filament bulbs.
If the Department of Energy holds out long enough, it may be able to switch to newly designed
energy-efficient incandescent bulbs
, which are being created by scientists desperate to save America from being plunged into buzzing dimness. Then the compact fluorescents can take their proper place in the landfill of history, where they will leach mercury into history's groundwater.