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75 watt incandescent light bulbs to be phased out

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio - It's lights out for the incandescent light bulb as the nation strives to become more energy efficient.

Under the Energy Independence Security Act of 2007, manufacturers of light bulbs are required to make them more efficient.

Last year, the government pulled the plug on the 100 watt incandescent bulb and starting January 1st, the 75 watt incandescent bulb will be phased out.

"You have got to remember incandescent light has never been changed since Thomas Edison. They've been around since him. There have been no technology changes," said Home Depot store manager Buddy Colley.

Under the federal law, screw-in based bulbs are required to use at least 27% less energy by 2014, which means the 60 and 40 watt incandescent bulbs will be the next ones to go.

Retailers can continue to sell their remaining stock of 75 watt bulbs.

New incandescent bulbs cannot be manufactured or imported. Instead, shoppers will have to choose between compact fluorescent lights and LEDs.

"A 60 watt bulb is probably one of the most commonly used. We might have some hesitation there. People might have a little bit of shock when it comes to that one," Colley said.

According to the Department of Energy, it cost about $1.00 a year to power an LED or compact fluorescent light bulb, about $3.50 a year for halogen lights and almost $5.00 a year for an incandescent bulb.

"A higher efficiency bulb will last way longer and if you take an LED they will last you up to 20 years on an LED bulb and people don't see that when they see the price tag. They go, ‘Oh my gosh, $30 for a light bulb.' But, it is going to last you twenty years not counting your savings in electricity," Colley said.

The United States isn't the only country phasing out incandescent bulbs. In 2009, Europe and Australia began transitioning from incandescent bulbs to halogen, LED and compact fluorescent light.

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