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It’s lights out for fluorescent and halogen light bulbs

Sharon Abram Principal Consultant
Sharon Abram

Sharon has over 20 years of experience as an environmental consultant, having been involved in a wide range of environmental projects. Sharon understanding of regulatory requirements and extensive experience in regulatory permitting, environmental due diligence and compliance auditing, and environmental management systems enables her to provide support and advice to clients in range of business sectors, including industry, oil & gas, sports, public sector, property, investment, financial and legal.

As part of the UK’s drive towards decarbonisation, the sale of inefficient halogen light bulbs (with some exceptions) will be banned from September 2021. The sale of fluorescent light bulbs will follow, with government plans to commence phasing out of the sale of high energy fluorescent light bulbs, and intending to end to their sale from September 2023.

New legislation will be brought forward this month to facilitate these requirements, supporting the UK’s measures to address the impacts of climate change and drive for improved energy efficiency. It is expected that LED light bulbs will account for 85% of all bulbs sold by 2030. These bulbs, in addition to being energy efficient, are longer lasting and will therefore generate less waste. Included in the ban from September 2021 will be the sale of lighting fixtures with non-replaceable fixed bulbs, again driving down the generation of waste.

The UK Government has said that these measures will avoid 1.26 million tonnes of carbon being emitted every year, this being the equivalent of removing over half a million cars from the UK’s roads.

Whilst there is no need to rush out and replace halogen light bulbs now, once those bulbs no longer work you will need to find a suitable LED replacement for your light fitting after September 2021. The same will be the case for fluorescence lighting from 2023, whereby replacement LED bulbs could be incorporated into fluorescent light fittings.

These changes will obviously have an impact for us all in our homes and domestic lives, but there will be implications at offices and industrial facilities too, which may for example have extensive fluorescent lighting. Here are a couple of things you can think about if you either manage a business or have a facilities management company look after your office lighting:

  • Review light fittings to establish those that will be impacted by the planned phase out.
  • Of the affected lighting ensure that suitable energy efficient replacement bulbs are available and that the replacement light bulbs will provide the required level of luminance.
  • Have a phase-out plan to replace those light fittings where replacement bulbs may not be available, and for the replacement of those lighting fixtures with non-replaceable fixed bulbs.
  • Use the opportunity to review the positioning and size of light fittings, introduce the use of motion detectors or timer operation.

More information is available on the Government's website -  End of halogen light bulbs spells brighter and cleaner future

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