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67% Believe Consumers Would Buy New Light Bulbs If They Work Even If Traditional Bulbs Are Still Available

Monday, July 18, 2011

The U.S. Department of Energy says that new light bulbs will cost more up front but save money in the long run. That, plus expected energy savings, has led to government regulations that will effectively ban the sale of traditional light bulbs starting next year.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that if the new bulbs work as advertised, 67% of Americans believe it is at least somewhat likely that consumers would buy them, even if traditional bulbs are still available. Only 28% consider that outcome to be unlikely. This includes 22% who say it's Very Likely consumers would buy them, while just six percent (6%) say it's Not At All Likely.  (To see survey question wording, click here.) 

At the same time, voters are skeptical about how the government would respond if it is wrong. If the new bulbs don’t work as promised and end up costing more in the long run, just 38% think the government is likely to reverse course and allow the sale of traditional bulbs. That includes 15% who say it is Very Likely. Fifty-two percent (52%) say it is unlikely that the government would undo the regulations if their assumptions are wrong, with 17% who believe they are Not At All Likely to do so.

Among those who have bought the new bulbs or know someone who has, 72% say it’s likely the bulbs will save money in the long run. Twenty-four percent (24%) say that’s unlikely.

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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. Field work for all Rasmussen Reports surveys is conducted by Pulse Opinion Research, LLC. See methodology.

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