DOE advances push for more efficient lightbulbs

By Brian Dabbs | 04/15/2024 07:05 AM EDT

A final rule issued Friday creates higher standards for eight classes of bulbs.

Department of Energy headquarters in Washington.

The Department of Energy headquarters in Washington. Francis Chung/POLITICO

The Department of Energy on Friday finalized new efficiency regulation for certain types of lightbulbs, a move the department says could avoid millions of tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

DOE said the new standards will raise the efficiency levels for “the most common lightbulbs.” It’s likely to drive investment toward better performing light-emitting diode (LED) lightbulbs and make fluorescent bulbs, a more efficient bulb than the incandescents that DOE phased out last year, more challenging to purchase.

“Under President Biden and as directed by Congress, DOE is following the lead of lightbulb manufacturers, helping American families flip the switch on massive energy savings through strengthened energy efficiency standards,” Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm said in a statement.


Last year, DOE implemented a 45-lumens-per-watt efficiency standard for most lightbulbs, which essentially prohibits the incandescent bulb first invented in the 19th century in the U.S. market. That regulation increased market dominance for more efficient LED lightbulbs in a major win for environmentalists.