In the face of global warming peril and consumers facing higher energy costs, the world’s leading retailer yesterday announced an ambitious campaign to sell 100 million compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs) at its Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club locations by the end of 2007. If achieved, this goal has the potential to save customers as much as $3 billion in electrical costs over the life of the bulbs. In addition to saving money for consumers, 20 million metric tons of greenhouse gases can be prevented from entering our atmosphere…
“This change is comparable to taking 700,000 cars off the road, or powering an additional 450,000 single-family homes. Compact fluorescent light bulbs will change the way consumers look at energy efficient products because not only can they benefit directly, but also feel good about it,” Wal-Mart Vice President of Corporate Strategy and Sustainability Andy Ruben said.
“We have a fundamental belief that all families should have access to affordable, sustainable goods, and compact fluorescent light bulbs are a great way for our customers to save money on their electric bills, and also benefit the environment.”
With nearly 20 percent of all home electric costs stemming from lighting alone, CFLs (like the dimmable CF Warm Glow light bulb) can have tremendous benefits. Converting one conventional 60W bulb to a 13W CFL can save: $30 in electric costs over its lifetime; 10 conventional bulbs from being produced, transported and discarded in a landfill; 220 lbs. of coal from being burned; and 450 lbs. of greenhouse gases from reaching the air. The average home has more than 30 compatible sockets, which means even more potential savings.
Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club have implemented a multi-dimensional plan to help sell the 100 million CFLs. The plan includes:
- Interactive displays at 100 select Wal-Mart stores beginning January 2007, to help customers choose which CFLs best fit their needs. An online savings calculator is currently available online.
- Educational displays to allow customers to compare qualities and styles, and demonstrate the potential savings associated with each type of CFL.
- Increased shelf space with prominent displays in the lighting aisles, as well as displays in unexpected places around Wal-Mart stores and Sam’s Clubs.
- Marketing promotions in print publications and on Wal-Mart TV and radio to give customers tips for transitioning to an energy-efficient home.
- Associate education through Wal-Mart’s internal newsletter, as well as a competition to encourage Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club associates to generate CFL sales.