Consumers can decide on lightbulbs - Brownlee

Incandescent light bulbs are safe.

Energy and Resources Minister Gerry Brownlee confirmed in Parliament today he was not going ahead with the previous government's decision to phase them out.

He said he was "lifting the ban" on traditional light bulbs but Labour MPs said there had never been one and the intention had been to gradually replace them with new energy efficient bulbs that are on the market.

"This government has real concerns about telling people they have to move to energy efficient light bulbs by decree," he said.

"We are committed to energy efficiency in the home and efficient lightning has an important role to play in helping us reduce the amount of energy we use, but this government believes it is a matter of consumer choice."

Mr Brownlee said people needed good, credible information about different lighting options and then they could decide for themselves what they wanted.

"Lifting the previous government's ban on incandescent light bulbs simply means we are allowing their continued sale and I am confident the consumer trend to energy efficient bulbs will continue," he said.

National used the light bulb issue during the election campaign as an example of Labour's "nanny state" mentality.

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