Mrs green’s stories
On a Sunday I like to bring you some stories from across the internet.
There are so many people doing wonderful things to help us all lead a more environmentally friendly lifestyle.
They can be simple tips such as how to reduce your carbon footprint, ideas for how to take care of our health naturally or they might be inspiring and uplifting articles to nurture your spirituality.
Home made sun jar
Our theme on Little Green Blog at the moment is LED lighting.
Following the LED lighting idea, I’ve found a way to make your own sun jar!
Sun jars, which use an LED bulb, solar cell and battery to produce light make a great night light for children’s rooms, provide an attractive alternative to ‘on grid’ mood lighting during the evening and make a useful alternative to candles.
I may not be able to make my own LED light bulbs or rig them up to a solar panel like Mr Green has been doing, but I might just manage to follow this tutorial from Instructables called “Home made sun jar” !
Yoga for beginners
Yoga is great for your health. It can improve posture, keep the body toned and supple, increase strength and help calm the mind for meditation.
I’ve been browsing Hannah Lovegrove’s site this week. She’s a yoga teacher from West Dorset.
I enjoyed reading her “Yoga for first aid” articles which shows you some simple yoga for the desk bound, simple tension releasing exercises and back and tummy strengthening ideas.
I’ve been doing 15 minutes of yoga a day for the last 6 weeks, and I’m gaining enormous physical, mental and spiritual benefits from it. Why not give it a go?
Incandescent to go
Back on the lighting theme (well Mr Green really does light up my life you know), it’s time to wave goodbye to incandescent light bulbs.
From 1st September 2009, the new legislation will make it illegal for EU states to manufacture and import traditional light bulbs. The move is expected to save the European Union one million tonnes of CO2 a year by 2020.
Some companies have already started to phase out incandescent bulbs voluntarily, but in a few days time the law will dictate that 100W and frosted incandescent light bulbs must be phased out. By 2012, lamps of lower wattage have to go too.
We hope that this will start to bring down the price of LEDs and that CFLs get gradually phased out as well, because here at Chez Green we’re very concerned about the cumulative effects of the mercury content of CFLs and their future impact on the environment.
RE banning light bulbs
“The move is expected to save the European Union one million tonnes of CO2 a year by 2020.”
All lights have their disadvantages and advantages:
It is extraordinary to ban a product safe to use, we are not talking about lead paint here.
Light bulbs don’t give out any CO2 gas, power stations might:
and power station emissions can and will be reduced anyway.
There are many reasons why the supposed savings don’t hold up,
(the fact that CFLs typically use twice the rated power due to how they draw current is just one such reason, as recognized by the US Dept of Energy: http://www.ceolas.net/#li15x )
“Savings” on what people want to buy are hardly “savings” anyway:
if people didn’t like light bulbs there’s be no need to ban them.
If there really was a need to target the bulbs, taxation on them would give government substantial income with reduced sales, for say renewable energy projects or home energy schemes, solving emission problems more than remaining light bulbs were causing them.
yes agree they seem exciting…
still, they can’t as yet be made bright beyond 60 watt (equivalent) or so, such lights costing around 120 dollars albeit with a very long lifespan, and they are too directional to replace ordinary ceiling lights
LEDs or other lights are still no reason to ban ordinary bulbs….
If new LED lights -or improved CFLs- are good,
people will buy them – no need to ban ordinary light bulbs (little point).
If they are not good, people will not buy them – no need to ban ordinary light bulbs (no point).
The arrival of the transistor didn’t mean that more energy using radio valves were banned… they were bought less anyway.
Hello Lighthouse, thanks for your comments. However, you are not correct about LED lighting.
LEDs can be as powerful as you need, any colour you want and with an angle of dispersion up to 120 degrees. I have seen commercially available retrofit lightbulbs that output over 1200 lumens at 120degrees dispersion, with warm light. This output is directly equivelent to a 100 watt incandescent lightbulb. If you are unaware of these products, you need to get up to speed with the latest developments. If necessary, I can post links here to retailers. In fact here is a link to Eternaleds 100 watt lightbulb
In addition, I have sourced, purchased and constructed LED lights that output the equivelent of 200 watts incandescent light bulb.
LED lighting is not only vastly superior to CFL environmentally and economically, it has also matured to a point where it is practical and suitable for home, business and architecture use. It can be beautiful and aethetic, or utilitarian.
The problem is not lack of technology, the problem lies with politicians and marketing and those who are reluctant to make a change
This reluctance is what is keeping the market slow and uncertain and thus prices are still too high for the general consumer.
The CFL is nothing more than a miniturised flourescent light. It has all the same established problems of mercury content, ballast circuitry, non-dimable control and end of life disposal problems. The only good thing about a CFL is that it does use less electrical power than a incandescent bulb. In that respect it has a temporary place, but only until LEDs find the market and take over for good.
Many thanks Mr Green! 🙂
Good news, must check on that
I keep getting told by UK manufacturers the problems I mentioned about LEDs
Makes you wonder about the industrial politics behind the ban….
– there’s this notion, which I come across others mentioning in recent days, that
manufacturers have been pressurized into making/distributing CFLs and payback time comes with this ban:
with EU citizens buying (poor quality) CFLs, also choosing to migrate to LEDs when those lights are ready – at yet more cost to citizens and at yet more profit to the manufacturers.
Cheap light bulbs = lots of competiton = no profits = no fun for manufacturers
Complex expensive light bulbs = less competition = lots of profits
Anyway, certainly if LEDs can also be made less directional, their great flexibility – modifying pure light colour output in any way you want – makes them a great choice as you say
yes it’s a 100w equivalent but a floodlight…
the more omnidirectional ones seem to have a capping system that reduces light output but spreads the light,
so the comparable one to an ordinary light bulb would still seem to be around 60 watts equivalent?
Still, no doubt we’ll get there…
@lighthouse: Hi lighthouse, it’s interesting that you are the third person to highlight the issues consumers face with ‘going green’. Never was there a truer phrase than ‘it’s not easy being green’ 😀 But the aim of our site is to debunk some of the myths, peel back the greenwash and help people make informed choices.
With people like you contributing to discussions it helps us to figure out the topics we need to cover on the site. Thank you for joining in!