Light Bulbs

The award-winning light bulb that certainly isn't dim

Posted by jamie — 3 October 2007 at 2:50pm - Comments

Louise Molloy, Tony Doyle and Jason Bruges holding the award

Greenpeace campaigner Louise Molloy, light bulb inventor Tony Doyle and designer Jason Bruges, proud owners of an award for innovation (Photo: Philip Vile)

One more (slightly belated) piece of news from the 100% Design exhibition comes in the form of an award. The light bulb used in Jason Bruges' installation has been given the inaugural award for innovative lighting design by the event's organisers, recognising the fact that it is the world's first fully dimmable energy efficient bulb.

Woolworths makes the switch: inefficient light bulbs out in 2010

Posted by jamie — 27 September 2007 at 3:22pm - Comments

Woolworths will be phasing out incandescent bulbs by the end of 2010

Great news. Woolworths have made a significant shift in their light bulbs policy and, as a result, are not longer bottom of the heap on our retailers league table.

After receiving thousands of emails and signatures from their customers (ie you) eager to see them take a lead on energy efficiency, Woolies will now be phasing out incandescent light bulbs by the end of 2010. It's not quite the 2008 date we were looking for, but never the less it's a massive improvement and they're now well ahead of many other companies such as Tesco and Waitrose. They're also cutting the price of their efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs).

Seeing the light at Earls Court

Posted by bex — 21 September 2007 at 3:17pm - Comments

Judging from recent comments on this site, it seems there are a few people out there who still believe the myths that compact fluorescent bulbs are ugly, ungainly and undimmable.

But going green doesn't mean sacrificing good design, and CFLs can be versatile, stylish and even beautiful. We've been working with designer Jason Bruges (he of Wind to Light renown) on an installation using fully dimmable, compact fluorescent bulbs and, well, I'll let the film do the talking:

Woolies customers demand they seize the light

Posted by jamie — 19 September 2007 at 8:27am - Comments

Woolies customers signed our flags asking the company to remove incandescent bulbs from their shelves

Remember those flags we hung outside Woolworths' head office last week? We have more of those. A lot more. Over 100 of them, each carrying dozens of signatures from Woolies customers eager to see the company selling only energy efficient bulbs. This morning, all those thousands of signatures are being delivered directly to the Woolworths board of directors at their meeting being held at head office, but of course we're doing it with a bit of style.

Flagging up the light bulb issue with Woolworths

Posted by jamie — 14 September 2007 at 4:32pm - Comments

Flags adorned with customers signatures outside Woolworths head office

Some of the flags bearing customers' signatures, telling Woolworths to seize the light and ditch inefficient light bulbs, hanging outside their London HQ

It's been a while since we heard from Woolworths about their policy on light bulbs, so we thought we'd deliver a little something to let them know we haven't forgotten about them.

Tesco spends £25 million to change a light bulb (amongst other things)

Posted by jamie — 13 September 2007 at 5:25pm - Comments

Something of a debate has developed on the venerable Today programme about light bulbs. It kicked off when Tesco boss Sir Terry Leahy appeared yesterday plugging a £25 million investment in a sustainable consumption institute.

Design for light

Posted by jamie — 11 September 2007 at 12:30pm - Comments

The design for Jason Bruges's installation using energy efficient light bulbs

So far in our light bulb campaign, we've bashed companies like Woolworths for not being proactive enough in sweeping inefficient incandescent bulbs from their shelves, but we're also working on more positive angles to demonstrate the plus-points of energy saving light bulbs or compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). One of the frequent excuses used for not switching to CFLs is that they're unattractive/ungainly/ugly/inconvenient (delete as applicable), but that's not so. They now come in an exhaustive variety of shapes, sizes and colours and can be just as aesthetically pleasing as old-fashioned bulbs.

Jason Bruges certainly thinks so. One of the UK's top interactive installation designers, he’s currently working with us on a new work to demonstrate the versatility of CFLs. He's no stranger to low-carbon design projects - his recent installation at the South Bank in London, Wind to Light, featured mini-wind turbines powering hundreds of LEDs, and his studio's latest work will be the front of house feature at this year's 100% Design at Earls Court Exhibition Centre later this month.

Lights go on at Sainsbury's

Posted by jamie — 28 August 2007 at 12:37pm - Comments

Volunteers in Blackburn with Seize the Light flags signed by Woolworths customersSomething that happened a few weeks ago but has slipped through the net is that Sainsbury's has announced an improved policy on light bulbs. By committing to phasing out those wasteful incandescent bulbs by 2010, they join Asda and Morrisons (who also recently shifted their stance) further up our league table. That still only gives them a D, but it leaves three supermarkets lower down - Tesco and the Co-op at E and Somerfield a disappointing F.

Meanwhile, there's been no further word from wooden spoon winners Woolworths since their CEO's response to our day of action, but we're still working on them. You may have been invited to sign a 'Seize the Light' flag outside you local branch, as groups of Greenpeace volunteers (like the Blackburn group pictured) have been collecting signatures to show Woolworths that their customers want them to help everyone improve their energy efficiency by getting rid of out-dated, inefficient light bulbs.

If you haven't emailed Woolworth CEO Trevor Bish-Jones, now's the time - everyone who's done so has received a personal response, and you could be one of those lucky people. Or if you fancy a bit of flag-signing, contact your local Greenpeace volunteer group and find out how you can help everyone make the switch.

Everything you've ever wanted to know about light bulbs...

Posted by jamie — 7 August 2007 at 10:40am - Comments

A compact fluorescent lamp

A bulb a day keeps climate change at bay (or something along those lines...)

We've had a lot of support for our current light bulbs campaign (and some detractors too, it has to be said) but there have been many queries about whether compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) really are what they're cracked up to be - what about the mercury, can they be recycled, that sort of thing. Many of them have already been covered elsewhere on the site, but it's worth following them up in a slightly more prominent position.

If you have any more queries, just post a comment below or contact us at

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