The past two winters have dumped plenty of snow on the east coast, making hash of such claims from a decade ago that “Sledding and snowball fights are as out-of-date as hoop-rolling,” as the New York Times sniffed in January of 2000. And yet, the relentless march to banish incandescent lights to fight the imagined effects of global warming marches on. Often with unintended consequences, as this Philadelphia Daily News report highlights:
Going green has caused some Philadelphians, including City Councilman Frank Rizzo, to see white.
“The new LED traffic-bulb lights were completely coated by snow and ice, preventing drivers from seeing the signal,” Rizzo said about his commute to work Thursday.
Although energy-efficient and cost-effective, LED lights have a downside. The LED bulbs burn cooler than the old incandescent lights, meaning snow that covers them melts slower, said Mark McDonald, Mayor Nutter’s spokesman.
Naturally, the unnecessary replacement of incandescents puts more local government employees to work:
Other cities that are prospering with LED traffic lights have adapted to some of the new technology’s imperfections.
In Milwaukee, the city purchased long poles and brushes to manually clean the lights, according to the city’s chief traffic and street-lighting engineer, Bob Bryson. Cops and snow-removal trucks report covered lights.
In Denver, workers use air compressors and long brushes to clear snow-covered traffic lights. Denver also monitors most of its lights from a traffic control room.
Also in snow-related tri-state news, pickle juice is being used to melt snow in cash-strapped Bergen County, New Jersey because it’s much cheaper than salt. But then Philadelphia Eagles fans know that there’s nothing pickle juice can’t do.
Related: Meanwhile, back in the much warmer climate of northern California,”Solyndra Solar Panel plant in Fremont, California has wasted a billion dollars, $535 million of those a direct bailout from U.S. taxpayers, and it is going ‘bust.'” But it continues to be a useful campaign backdrop for green-obsessed Democrat politicians such as Barbara Boxer and President Obama.