This year marks the final phase out of incandescent light bulbs in the EU, and their total replacement by what’s termed compact fluorescent lamps or CFLs. The reasons given for this move are that CFLs are more environmentally friendly, because they reduce CO2  emissions, and more energy-efficient. According to EU figures, these energy-saving bulbs can easily save you €50 a year, even including the price of the bulbs, and can cut a household’s total electricity consumption by 10-15%. CFLs last at least 6-10 years, compared to 1-2 years for conventional bulbs and use as little as one-fifth of the electricity used by conventional incandescent light bulbs. When you think there are estimated to be 4 billion light bulbs in the EU, the savings are considerable.

It all sounds great, doesn’t it?

There are some downsides though. They are of course more expensive than incandescents but the most noticeable is that when turned on, they can take 10-15 minutes to reach…

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