As a result of the global focus on energy efficiency and the drive to reduce CO2 emissions, the European Union has set out a plan to restrict the sale of lamps identified as being inefficient. The phase out begins from September 2009 with the restriction of the sale of all 100W and above GLS, frosted incandescent and non-clear halogen lamps. From then on, manufacturers cannot produce or legally sell them and wholesalers can only fulfil existing orders until their stock runs out.Each year more lamps will be phased out. The decision to switch consumers to more energy efficient alternatives is expected to reduce European energy consumption for domestic lighting by 30 per cent, thereby preventing the release of 23 million tons of CO2 emissions per year.Which lamps are being phased out?* All frosted incandescent and non-clear halogen lamps from September 2009* T8 halo basic fluorescent tubes by 2010* All clear incandescent lamps (15W-100W) by September 2012* T12 fluorescent tubes by 2012* All clear halogen lamps (Class D&E) by September 2013 and Class C by 2016Any decision on the phasing out of directional incandescent (reflector lamps) and halogen lamps will be made at the end of 2009.Are there any exemptions?
There are a number of special purpose incandescent and halogen lamps that are exempt. These include GLS Fireglow, insect and rough service lamps, pygmy lamps for fridges and ovens, 2u 3u 4u half spiral full spiral lotus energy saving lamps tubular cooker hood/furniture lighting lamps as well as certain halogen linear (DEQ) and capsule (SEQ) lamps. Most manufacturers' web sites will advise which of their products are being phased out and which are unaffected.Isn't this a domestic issue?Not entirely. On average lighting accounts for up to 40 per cent of a building's total energy consumption. It also offers one of the biggest opportunities to make cost savings. Though it may be fair to say that incandescent lamps have never played a major role in the main commercial and industrial lighting market, fluorescent and halogen lighting do and both types of lighting will be affected by the new EU directive.What about the negativity surrounding CFL energy saving lamps, including the cold light they emit?The latest generation of CFL lamps are available in soft light tones and a broad range of colour temperatures.
Under the Energy Saving Trust's 'Energy Saving Recommended' accreditation, CFLs have to emit the same warm light level as GLS lamps. CFLs are much safer to use in confined areas as they produce very little heat, offer a constant flicker-free light, are no longer affected by switching and in some instances can be dimmed.What about the need to recycle energy saving lamps because of the mercury they contain?Over the past decade, lamp manufacturers have developed innovative ways to increase lamp performance whilst minimizing the use of mercury. Therefore, energy saving fluorescent lamps contain only very small amounts of mercury. Under the WEEE Directive, the European lighting industry aims to recycle 80 pr cent of energy-saving fluorescent lamps.Are LED lamps already an alternative?Although the commercial development of LEDs is still in its early stages, these light sources are slowly making their way into the general lighting market, including a growing number of products for spot and decorative lighting. This summer should see the first LED lamp with a screw base capable of replacing a standard 40W GLS lamp.
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