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UK turns on to energy efficient lighting

UK turns on to energy efficient lighting

Wednesday 22 January 2014

UK consumers have embraced energy saving CFL light bulbs but are lagging behind other European nations in switching to LEDs, new research reveals today. Just under nine in 10 UK households now buy CFL light bulbs as a matter of course, according to a survey on the light bulb purchasing habits of 5,000 people across 12 countries.

The UK scores 10 per cent higher than the 78 per cent average for the country's surveyed, putting it behind only Italy, where 96 per cent of people said they "always" of "often" opted for CFLs, Portugal which saw 95 per cent backing for the technology, and Spain where 94 per cent opted for the energy-saving bulbs.

According to the survey, the energy and cost savings offered by the bulbs were the main reason consumers opted for them over alternative bulbs - CFLs use 75 per cent less energy than an incandescent bulb providing the same light and also last around 10 times longer. However, the research finds the UK is trailing five other European nations in its adoption of LED light bulbs, which are widely regarded as the most efficient lighting option available.

LEDs are more expensive than CFLs, but around 80 per cent more efficient than incandescent bulbs and last up to 25 times longer. Yet just a third of UK households are now buying LEDs regularly, compared to 46 per cent of Swedish households and 45 per cent of Austrian consumers.

The Energy Saving Trust, which commissioned the research, estimates that UK householders could save a cumulative £1.4bn a year by replacing the remaining incandescent and halogen bulbs in their homes with CFLs and LEDs, amounting to an annual £50 saving on their energy bills. Undertaken at a national level, the move would also avoid 4.6 million tonnes of CO2 emissions.

The body supports the PremiumLight initiative, which offers homeowners and businesses guidance to help them maximise the benefits of more efficient lighting. Tom Lock, certification manager at the Energy Saving Trust, said: "The most important thing is that consumers are given clear and accurate information about the quality of energy saving light bulbs and that the cost and energy saving benefits are fully realised.

"Through PremiumLight we will be working with industry to ensure that consumers are informed about the quality and different types of energy saving light bulbs so they can make informed purchasing decisions."


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