The European Union joins Australia in an effort to phase out incandescents

In the past month, DailyTech has reported on two government initiatives to cut down on power requirements and greenhouse emissions. In Raleigh, NC, the local government is committed to making the switch from incandescent to LED lighting for public lighting (street lights, pedestrian walkways, parking deck lighting, etc). The move would save the city roughly $80,000 USD a year in utility bills.

Likewise, Australia's Environment Minister announced that his country would be phasing out all incandescent light bulbs and replacing them with fluorescents. The move is said to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 4 million tons while cutting household power bills by 66%.

Now it appears that the European Union (EU) is jumping on the energy-efficient lighting bandwagon. EU leaders at a summit on Friday mandated that energy-efficient lighting be in place in office buildings and streets in 2008 and homes by 2009.

"We're not saying people should throw out all the bulbs in their house today but people should start looking at what's in the shops," said German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The EU has set a target to reduce energy consumption by 20% before 2020. The EU has also challenged the United States, China and India to make similar measures and is committed to upping its target to 30% if the countries comply.

The EU has also made a commitment to receive 20% of its power from renewable energy sources by 2020. This would be a substantial improvement from the current level of 6.5%.

"Young lady, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" -- Homer Simpson
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