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News 9 June 2021 Updated 8 July 2021

UK to end sale of halogen lightbulbs in effort to tackle climate change

The UK Government has laid out plans to end the sale of halogen lightbulbs from October 2021, to be followed by a ban on the sale of fluorescent bulbs two years later.

Around two-thirds of lightbulbs currently sold in the country are LEDs – or light emitting diodes – which are more energy efficient than traditional halogen bulbs. LEDs last five times longer and use 80% less energy to produce the same amount of light as halogen bulbs.

By replacing all the bulbs in your home with LED lights, you could reduce your carbon dioxide emissions by up to 55kg a year. This is equivalent to the carbon dioxide emitted by driving your car around 190 miles.

The UK began the phase out of higher-energy halogen bulbs in 2018, however retailers have been allowed to continue to sell old stock. From 1 October, they will no longer be able to sell the majority of halogen bulbs for household use.

Brian Horne, senior insight and analytics consultant, commented on the announcement:

“Lighting accounts for around 15% of total electrical use in the typical household. By replacing halogen bulbs with energy efficient LED lights, you will have a positive impact on the environment and reduce carbon emissions, thanks to their lower energy usage and long lifespan of 15-20 years.

“You will save money on your energy bills too, so this announcement is a welcome one.”

The new legislation is expected to increase the market share of LED lightbulbs to 85% of all bulbs sold by 2030. It also marks the start of a phase out of high-energy fluorescent lightbulbs, with a ban on their sale expected from October 2023.

Lightbulbs will also start to feature the new energy label, which simplifies the way that energy efficiency is displayed using an A-G scale. The previous A+, A++ and A+++ ratings have been removed to help consumers choose the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly bulbs for their needs.

According to the government, the move is part of a range of energy efficiency improvements to appliances that could save consumers an average of £75 a year on their energy bills, as well as reducing total carbon emissions by 8 million tonnes in 2021.

We have more advice on lighting, including potential energy bills savings when switching to LEDs.

Last updated: 8 July 2021