U.S. Retailers Sell Millions of ENERGY STAR LED Bulbs as Challenge Ramps Up
The ENERGY STAR LED Bulb Challenge reached a major milestone this month, as participating retailers -- including Ace Hardware, Best Buy, Costco, Lowe’s and The Home Depot -- reported over 10 million certified bulbs sold across the U.S. since the start of the challenge. This latest count marks the halfway point to the 20 million bulb goal, as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and its partners work to educate Americans about the importance of looking for the ENEGY STAR label to save energy, save money and help protect the climate.
“Nearly 70% of sockets in the U.S. still contain an inefficient light bulb,” says Ann Bailey, ENERGY STAR Labeling Branch Director. “As the price of LED bulbs continues to drop and becomes a real option for home owners and renters across the country, we’re excited about the potential for dramatic change. Customers can now find ENERGY STAR certified LED bulbs at dramatically lower prices than just a year ago—some as low as $5 in store. This challenge is EPA’s way of introducing consumers to the next horizon in high-performing, energy efficient lighting.”
Last April, EPA challenged retailers to sell 20 million ENERGY STAR certified LED bulbs by Earth Day 2014, as a way to encourage customers to switch out inefficient lighting and learn about the benefits of looking for the ENERGY STAR on this new, cutting edge technology. LED bulbs that have earned the ENERGY STAR are independently certified and have undergone extensive testing to demonstrate, among other requirements, that they can deliver on brightness and produce light in all directions. They use 75 percent less energy than standard incandescent bulbs and can last 25 times longer. A single bulb can save over $135 in electricity costs over its lifetime and last for more than 20 years with typical use.
Products, homes and buildings that earn the ENERGY STAR label prevent greenhouse gas emissions by meeting strict energy efficiency requirements set by the U.S. EPA. In 2012 alone, Americans, with the help of ENERGY STAR, saved $26 billion on their utility bills and prevented greenhouse gas emissions equal to the annual electricity use of more than 35 million homes. From the first ENERGY STAR qualified computer in 1992, the ENERGY STAR label can now be found on products in more than 70 different categories, with more than 4.5 billion sold over the past 20 years. Over 1.4 million new homes and 20,000 office buildings, schools and hospitals have earned the ENERGY STAR label.