Would you spend $50 on a lightbulb?

Why so much outrage over a lightbulb? The Department of Energy recently awarded a $10 million “L-Prize” to Philips for creating an “affordable” $50 green lightbulb, as a step in its effort to ban traditional incandescent lightbulbs. The new 30-year bulb, available now, sweeps any top CFL bulb under the table. But many are up in arms over why the government would help fund a product that has such a high initial price tag.

News outlets like the Washington Post originally wrote that the new bulb does not save users money. But a report by Think Progress revealed that they had their math all wrong. The L-Prize winner uses a mere 10 watts of energy to give off the glow of a 60 watt bulb, saving an average 10-year user $130, which more than pays for the bulb. The Washington Post updated their initial math without issuing a correction to readers. For shame.

To me, the bulb is a no-brainer. In addition to saving on your energy bill, you get to wait decades before having to worry about changing the bulb again. Think of it like buying light in bulk. Less packaging, less disposal, less trips to the store. It’s a big step in the right direction. And like all CFL bulbs, expect the price to rapidly decrease once it become widely available on the market.

What do you think? Would you part with $50 for a single bulb today?