This website uses cookies primarily for visitor analytics. Certain pages will ask you to fill in contact details to receive additional information. On these pages you have the option of having the site log your details for future visits. Indicating you want the site to remember your details will place a cookie on your device. To view our full cookie policy, please click here. You can also view it at any time by going to our Contact Us page.

Ireland legislates to ban inefficienct light bulbs by 2009

06 December 2007

As part of its National Carbon Budget, the Irish Government announced what will be, in effect, the European Union's first ban on energy-wasting incandescent lightbulbs.

Courtesys of Greenpeace UK
The UK government's position on energy inefficient lightbulbs was thrown into doubt today after its Irish counterpart announced legislation to introduce mandatory efficiency standards for light bulbs which will see them banned by the beginning of 2009. In contrast, the UK plan proposes a "voluntary agreement" between major retailers which has no legal teeth and will only come into full effect in 2011.

In a letter to Greenpeace UK, the UK's Department for the Environment, Food and Rural affairs initially claimed that a mandatory ban on the sale of old fashioned, incandescent light bulbs would contravene EU law - before modifying its message to suggest that such a move would not be "appropriate". Today's decision casts both opinions into serious doubt.

Responding to the news, Greenpeace climate campaigner Louise Molloy said: "By banning all wasteful lightbulbs within months, Ireland has shown the rest of Europe that it's serious about energy efficiency and fighting climate change. Meanwhile the UK government talks tough but then introduces weak voluntary agreements that won't even come into effect until 2011. We can't rely on industry to deliver this- the Government has to act."[1]

Retailers have told Greenpeace that without actual legislation, there is nothing forcing manufacturers to meet a higher demand for energy efficient, Compact Fluorescent (CFL), bulbs. Lightbulb manufacturers such as Philips, GE and Osram are trying to keep incandescent bulbs in the shops until 2019. [2] Every year of delay in ‘banning the bulb' will see Europe unnecessarily pumping 20 million tonnes of climate-changing carbon dioxide into the air. [4]

Over the past year, a number of EU countries have talked about similar bans, but Ireland is the first to act. Last month, French President Sarkozy declared his support for a 2010 national ban but concrete proposals have not been published yet. The Dutch Environment Minister Jacqueline Cramer, a former Philips employee, announced initial support for a phase-out of incandescent lightbulbs in 2011 but then reversed her opinion. [3] Cramer now supports the manufacturers' call for a prolonged phase out lasting until 2019.

Print this page | E-mail this page


View more articles
Article image

Springboard effect recognised on Young Leader winner’s career

Mohammad Hassan won the Young Leader of the Year award within the PFM Partnership Awards 2020 event and is continuing to see the benefits of his impressive...
Article image

Why the Law Says You Need a Nappy Bin Disposal Service

At home, parents are used to disposing of their babies’ used nappies the same way they do any other domestic waste - bagging it up and sticking it in the r...
Article image

Center Parcs goes cashless with Systopia

Systopia, which deals with cashless payment systems, has secured a contract with UK Short Break Operator Center Parcs to provide cashless payment systems i...

Benchmarking maintenance

BSRIA has just published this year's operation and maintenance benchmarking report as a guide for building operators to evaluate their performance against ...
Article image

OPEX OMATION 206 - the high volume letter opener

The design of the Opex Omation 206 sets a new standard of excellence! You can tell at a glance that this is no ordinary envelope opener. It represents the ...
Article image

INTERVIEW: Stephanie Hamilton, MD at ISS Food & Hospitality

Stephanie Hamilton, MD at ISS Food & Hospitality, goes the extra mile for clients. Just ask the Prince of Wales…...