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Public consultation launched on restriction of sale of incandescent light bulbs

     The Government today (August 12) launched a three-month public consultation on the restriction of sale of energy-inefficient incandescent light bulbs (ILB). Taking into account overseas experience and the supply of replacement options for ILB, the Government proposes to progressively phase out ILB to conserve energy, reduce carbon emissions and alleviate the impact of climate change.

     "Lighting on average accounted for around 15 per cent of total electricity consumption in Hong Kong in the past decade. ILB work by heating a tungsten filament with 90 per cent of the consumed electricity lost as heat, and only 10 per cent is used for lighting. Replacing ILB with more energy-efficient products will achieve substantial savings in electricity consumption. Moreover, the public can save money in electricity bills and reduce greenhouse gas emissions," said Mr Chan Fan, Deputy Director of Electrical and Mechanical Services.

     In the consultation document, the Government proposes to restrict the supply of energy-inefficient non-reflector type ILB by phases through legislation. The initial phase of the proposed mandatory scheme will cover non-reflector type ILB that are 25 watts or above, which includes General Lighting Service (GLS) lamps, candle-shaped, round-shaped and other decorative lamps, but excludes tungsten halogen lamps. The Government proposes to prohibit the supply of lamps that cannot meet the minimum energy performance standards (MEPS) and to govern the supply of lamps that can meet the MEPS through a registration system.

     For ILB that are proposed to be phased out, the Government also proposes to make reference to overseas mandatory schemes in setting relevant MEPS.

     The Government expects the scheme to achieve an electricity saving of up to 390 GWh per annum. Assuming an average tariff of $1 per kWh, the scheme can achieve an annual saving of $390 million in electricity bills and reduce carbon emissions by 273,000 tonnes.

     The Government highlights in the consultation document that the proposal to phase out ILB has taken into account overseas experience and the availability of replacement options in Hong Kong. Currently, many countries and regions in the world have implemented or planned for the phasing out of ILB. Most countries decided to phase out GLS lamps before phasing out other types of ILB. Regarding the local supply of substitutes, non-reflector type ILB can generally be replaced by more energy-efficient light bulbs (e.g. compact fluorescent lamps and Light Emitting Diode (LED) lamps, etc).

     The consultation document is available at District Offices, regional offices of the Environmental Protection Department and public libraries. It is also available on the website of the Environment Bureau ( The consultation period will end on November 11, 2011.

Ends/Friday, August 12, 2011
Issued at HKT 15:31


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