The FINANCIAL -- One-in-five Americans (20%) say they or someone they know has bought
large quantities of traditional light bulbs to use when those bulbs
disappear off store shelves next year under new federal light bulb
A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 70% of Adults aren’t doing that themselves or don’t know anyone who is, but another 10% are not sure.
The new government regulations provide for the manufacture of similar-looking bulbs that will last longer and be more energy-efficient – but also more expensive. Critics view the regulations as unnecessary government intrusion in the free market and see them as effectively banning the kind of light bulb Americans have used for decades.
Just 20% of adults think the sale of traditional light bulbs should be banned. Sixty-seven percent (67%) oppose such a ban. Thirteen percent (13%) are undecided.
However, 57% think it is at least somewhat likely that the new light bulbs, while they will cost more up front, will save money in the long run, as the federal Energy Department claims. Thirty-six percent (36%) think long-term savings are unlikely. These findings include 29% who think the savings are Very Likely and just nine percent (9%) who say they are Not At All Likely.
Two years ago, only 18% of adults thought it was the government’s job to tell Americans what kind of light bulb they should use. Seventy-two percent (72%) say it’s none of the government’s business.
The survey of 1,000 Adults was conducted on July 13-14 2011 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.
Americans have decidedly mixed feelings about the impact of the new fluorescent or halogen bulbs on the environment. Twenty-eight percent (28%) believe the bulbs will be good for the environment, but just as many (28%) think they will be bad environmentally. Twenty-eight percent (28%) more feel they will have no impact. Seventeen percent (17%) aren’t sure.
Still, 81% say they or someone they know has already bought and used one of the new energy-efficient light bulbs.
Perhaps suggesting there may be a consumer surprise coming soon, just 63% of adults have followed even somewhat closely news stories about the legislation mandating the manufacture and sale of only the new high-efficiency light bulbs. This includes only 27% who say they have been following those stories Very Closely.
Women oppose the ‘ban’ on traditional light bulbs more than men do. Voters over 40 are against it more than those who are younger.
But the majority of adults across all demographic categories oppose a ban on the sale of traditional light bulbs, including 69% of those who say they or someone they know has already bought and used one of the new energy-efficient bulbs.
Higher-income voters are the most likely to have already tried out the new bulbs or to know someone who has bought and used one. Those who’ve already used the new bulbs are also much more likely than those who have not to think they will save money in the long run.
Younger Americans are more convinced than their elders that the new bulbs will be good for the environment.
A majority of U.S. voters continue to feel as they have for years that discovering new sources of energy is more important than reducing energy consumption.
Seventy-two percent (72%) of voters believe a free market economy is better than an economy managed by the government. Just 14% think a government-managed economy is better.