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10 years on from the first inefficient light bulb ban, consumers have saved up to €1,330

29 August 2019
by BEUC -- last modified 29 August 2019

In the decade after EU rules on energy-efficient lighting kicked in, the average European household has saved up to €1,330 - the equivalent combined price of a mid-range washing machine, fridge and dishwasher.


The figure comes from a new study commissioned by ANEC, the European consumer voice in standardisation, and BEUC, The European Consumer Organisation.

Thanks to the EU Ecodesign lighting regulation, inefficient incandescent and halogen light bulbs have been phased out progressively since 1st September 2009, paving the way to more efficient LEDs. According to Spanish consumer association OCU, LEDs are up to 10 times more efficient than incandescent bulbs. ANEC and BEUC had long called for the progressive phasing out of incandescent light bulbs, proven to disadvantage both the consumer’s pocket and the environment.

The successive bans have boosted sales of LEDs and helped consumers save money in the long term. British consumer group Which? found that, in comparison to halogen light bulbs, LEDs last much longer and are cheaper to run.

Monique Goyens, Director General of BEUC, commented:

“Everyone agrees that energy-efficient light bulbs help consumers save money. Now we know how much. It is good news that just replacing our light bulbs when needed can help consumers save a nice sum of money. With prices of energy-efficient LEDs going down, greening definitely helps consumers save.”

Stephen Russell, Secretary General of ANEC, commented:

“Not only have LEDs become more energy-efficient, but their quality has also improved over time. For example, colour rendering and brightness are both better. Lights have become nicer to the eye and less troubling for people prone to migraines, thanks to reduced flickering.”

BEUC acts as the umbrella group in Brussels for its members and its main task is to represent them at European level and defend the interests of all Europe’s consumers. BEUC investigates EU decisions and developments likely to affect consumers, with a special focus on five areas identified as priorities by its members: Financial Services, Food, Digital Rights, Consumer Rights & Enforcement and Sustainability.

European Consumer Organisation (BEUC)