Councilman encouraging ‘greener’ lighting

   JAMESBURG — For one local councilman, a light went on when he discovered a way to encourage borough residents to make a cheap and eco-friendly improvement to their homes.
   With the twist of a wrist and at the expense of few extra dollars the average Joe can change the world, conserving energy by replacing incandescent light bulbs with compact florescent lights, said Thomas Bodall, borough councilman.
   In conjunction with Energy Star’s Change a Light, Change a World program, sponsored by the federal government, Mr. Bodall has been promoting the newest push for green-theme homes on the borough’s Web site at
   On the site’s “Clean & Green Jamesburg” page, the borough is asking for 500 residents to make a pledge — replace older bulbs with the newer energy saving florescent lights, he said.
   Not only do fluorescent light bulbs slow global warming by conserving energy, but they put a little extra change in resident’s pockets. The bulbs can last up to five years and can lower a customer’s electric bill by 50 to 75 cents per bulb changed each month, according to an National Public Radio article published in February 2007.
   Since the borough first featured the program on its Web site early last week, only three people have made pledges to change their bulbs, Mr. Bodall said, but he hopes there are more to come once the word gets out.
   If the borough does meet its quota it will receive a certificate from Energy Star, a joint program of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Energy. However, Mr. Bodall said he sees a much greater benefit for those involved in the program.
   ”There’s no real incentive besides doing our part to save the environment,” he said. “I believe it’s a township’s responsibility.”
   The Energy Star Web site asks users how many light bulbs they pledge to change, their first name, an e-mail address and ZIP code and five survey questions on other energy saving measures they might have planned for their homes in the future.
   ”It’s mostly for awareness about the environment,” Mr. Bodall said.
   For more information on the program, contact Mr. Bodall at [email protected] or contact Borough Hall at 732-521-2222.