If energy needs to be saved, there are good ways to do it.
                                                               Government product regulation is not one of them

Monday, July 30, 2012

A Dutch View: "The Unholy Alliance between Philips and the Greens"

Updated August 1

Having covered South African and Hong Kong criticism of the ban and of the replacement bulbs, it is worth remembering that there have been similar good articles originating in the EU.
Naturally, most English language articles have a UK source, but some others have appeared that don't need translation tools (or manual work!).
This article by Dutch researchers has been mentioned in a previous post, but deserves its own.
Written in 2010, it remains valid today.

From University of Colorado Professor Roger Pielke Sr Climate Science Site:
Both Professor Roger Pielke Sr and Professor Roger Pielke Jr (blog) are something as unusual as institutional, renowned climate scientists that are not afraid to make their own judgements on climate change.
Note how criticism is otherwise something such scientists tend to do once they leave office!
(and - whatever the rights and wrongs - the notion that "most scientists agree with current climate change policies" should be taken with that knowledge, that few would go against established governmental and institutional opinion anyway, for fear of not receiving continued funding etc)

The below article post has this source.

About the authors

Henk Tennekes is an aeronautical engineer. From 1965 to 1977 he was a professor of Aerospace Engineering at Penn State. He is co-author of A First Course in Turbulence (MIT Press, 1972 – still in print) and author of The Simple Science of Flight, recently (2009) released revised and expanded.

Joost van Kasteren [website] is a senior writer on technology and science in Holland, having also been a science journal editor.
He covers energy, housing, water management, agriculture, food technology, innovation, science policy, and related issues.

Typically straight-talking Dutchmen, they don't spare the rhetoric as they conclude the article...

In 2006, Dutch legislators caved in under the combined lobbying pressure by Philips and Greenpeace. A parliamentary majority in The Hague embraced the idea of banning incandescent bulbs and ordered the Dutch Environment Minister, Jacqueline Cramer, to lobby for an extension of the ban to all states in the European Union.

That task proved simple enough.
Top politicians in Europe, Germany’s Angela Merkel up front, deeply impressed by Al Gore’s Inconvenient Truth, were only too eager to project an image of strength and will power concerning imagined threats to the planet. ”Save the Earth, ban the bulb” was an effective campaign strategy.

To make a long story short, it took less than one year to issue a binding European Union Edict ordering the phasing out of incandescent bulbs, starting with a ban on bulbs of 100 watts and more effective March 1, 2009, and leading to a complete ban of all incandescent lighting on September 1, 2012.

The spin doctors at Philips headquarters have got it made.
And if this scam backfires on them in consumer protests all over Europe, they can cover their backsides by claiming that politicians and the green movement are responsible, not they.
Backfire it will. There exist no decent alternatives to incandescent light. None.

The history of the EU ban is extensively covered with documentation and communication copies on the Ceolas site, here: http://ceolas.net/#euban.



hannelore said...

If Philips wants to save the earth they could just stop making incandescent bulbs themselves!
So real reason is profit from a ban.

Lighthouse said...

Thank you Hannelore.
Yes they of course also want to make sure no cheap competition is there. The light bulb manufacturers like to echo want environmentalists say, but of course have their own agenda.

Ultimately though one should not blame manufacturers looking for profit, rather government politicians and agencies who allow them to achieve policies which are not in the consumers' best interests - with light bulbs as with much else.