In a twist, Congress looks to delay bulb phaseout

The budget bill drawn up to avert a federal shutdown includes a provision that will delay enforcement of the new energy-efficiency standards for light bulbs. The rider related to the FY 2012 Omnibus funding bill does not repeal or change the standards, however. Instead, it imposes funding limitations on the Department of Energy (DOE) to enforce the light bulb standards for FY 2012.

According to an article in USA Today, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association opposes a delay in enforcement of the phaseout of 100-watt incandescent bulbs. But some politicians -- such as Texas Republican Joe Barton -- applauded the delay as a temporary victory for freedom of choice.

Under the new bill, which is expected to be signed into law this week, enforcement of the phaseout of incandescent light bulbs will be delayed until at least Oct. 1. The phaseout was originally expected to kick in Jan. 1. 

President George Bush in 2007 signed the law that called for a phaseout of certain incandescent bulbs. 

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