"They can't be used in ovens or freezers"
"So what? Don't use them in those places. Cars can't be driven underwater, either."
I think the point is if the feel-good politicians ban them entirely, or otherwise resistrict their availability (like with special taxes), we will have a big problem. Routine replacement of CFLs that were installed in the wrong application will be more harmful to the environment, not less. Hopefully this won't happen, but were talking politicians...
"They require more energy to manufacture"
"I've heard that claimed, and it's probably true, but who can say how much? Let's say its 5x the energy to manufacture an incandescent (I doubt it's that much). The CFL lasts about 10x as long, and use 75% less energy. Do the math."
Its more than "probably" true. 10x the energy/pollution would be a good starting estimate. They cost 10 times as much (visit Menards) as incandescents. They are sold in very competitive markets, meaning the cost you pay is a reflection of the materials used and the difficulty in obtaining and/or manufacturing those materials (as opposed to cost being a funtion of some huge mark-up by a monopolist) Cost in a competitive market like this = energy and pollution. More labor results in more pollution as well. An incandescent is mainly glass, a filament, and metal base, and leaded or lead-free solder. All of these are present in the CFL, but in addition you have mercury, capacitors, inductors, diodes, resistors, a printed circuit board, insulated wire, and a plastic shell. These things require energy to produce and their production and disposal results in pollution. This is dirty stuff, and the pollution is real pollution, not just CO2.
Then there is infant mortality. When one bulb out of your four pack of incandescents is "Bad From Stock" or dies shortly after installation, you have not lost much money and the environmental impact is minimal. When one of four CFLs is BFS or dies prematurely the financial and environmental harm is much greater, since you already put many times the cost and pollution up front. The number of components, and the type of parts being used near or beyond their recomended temp ratings is likely to greatly affect CFL life. I'm sure we will see reliable data on typical use lifespan in the near future (rather than open fixture life). Without proof or independent validation, I don't accept the lifespan data provided by any manufacturer as real-world.
Also, accidental breakage is a negative for CFLs. Again, cost and pollution is put up front, so if you break a bulb you have the same cost and enironmental issues as with the Bad From Stock scenario. Not good for CFLs.
All that said, I use several at home. They make sense in many applications. They don't make as much sense in others. I'll decide which which is which, thank you very much Mr government man. I plan on replacing a couple more bulbs with CFLs - dang kids can't seem to turn a switch off when not in use.
The Foxnews story on hazardous cleanup came from here:http://ellsworthmaine.com/site/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=7446&Itemid=31
The hazardous cleanup issue was the result of the flourescent breaking over shag carpeting - can't simply sweep it up. Anyway, the negative comments about prisonplanet and Foxnews are ad hominem and are therefore losing arguments in any serious debate. Better to argue the facts.