The Law of Unintended Consequences
Bet you never thought about it, but Energy-efficient traffic lights can't melt snow. Talk about the Law of Unintended Consequences. You want to save money by buying more energy-efficient traffic lights, but then you end up spending an untold amount of money on traffic light cleaners, or potentially, the EMS/Police who have to deal with the aftermath of stop lights not working after heavy snows. Then there are the health insurance costs, department of transportation costs to fix the barriers that might get damaged, car insurance costs, etc... The consequences are complex and far reaching. But once you see it, it just seems so obvious! Of course LEDs aren't going to melt snow, they don't produce very much heat at all!
Unfortunately, while using incandescent bulbs, this wasn't a problem. So it wasn't a problem that they knew needed to be addressed. Trust me, if incandescent bulbs didn't melt the snow previously, then you can be guaranteed it would have been at the top of their list to find a solution to this problem. But they picked a solution based on one factor that brought some other problems along with it.
Read the rest of this post at http://www.codethinked.com