Tag Archives: Mercury

Ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for their ballasts

Ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for their ballasts

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for their ballasts

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Energy > Energy efficiency

Ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for their ballasts

2 emissions. Moreover, the inappropriate outdoor use of these lamps increases both light pollution and the energy consumption of lighting. This Regulation therefore sets ecodesign requirements for these products with a view to reducing their environmental impact.

Document or Iniciative

Commission Regulation (EC) No 245/2009 of 18 March 2009 implementing Directive 2005/32/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council with regard to ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps without integrated ballast, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for ballasts and luminaires able to operate such lamps, and repealing Directive 2000/55/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (Text with EEA relevance).

Summary

This Regulation lays down the ecodesign rules applicable to certain types of lamps to be used for general lighting, specifically:

  • fluorescent lamps without integrated ballast *;
  • high intensity discharge lamps *;
  • ballasts * and luminaires * able to operate such lamps.

Ecodesign requirements

This Regulation defines ecodesign requirements in three progressive stages (2009, 2012 and 2017), each representing a gradual increase in the targets and/or extending the scope of the requirements to new sub-categories of products. These requirements concern:

  • lamps: they must meet efficacy, performance and information requirements. The different types of lamps must reach a certain luminous efficacy in each wattage category, and meet lamp life and lamp lumen maintenance requirements. Furthermore, manufacturers of lamps are required to provide information concerning, in particular, the wattage, lamp lumen, efficacy, maintenance factor, mercury content, colour rendering index and colour temperature of the lamps.
  • ballasts: they must meet energy performance and information requirements. When the lamps are switched on, the ballasts must comply with minimum efficacy thresholds. In addition, the power consumption of fluorescent lamp ballasts shall not exceed 1.0 W when the connected lamps are switched off. Manufacturers of ballasts are required to provide information on the energy efficiency index of products.
  • luminaires: they must meet energy performance and information requirements. When the lamps are switched on, the power consumption of the luminaires for fluorescent lamps shall not exceed that of the incorporated ballasts. Manufacturers of luminaires are required to provide information on the efficiency of all ballasts and lamps sold with a luminaire, as well as maintenance and disassembly instructions.

Conformity assessment

Manufacturers or their representatives are required to carry out a conformity assessment before placing an energy-using product on the market.

Verification procedures for market surveillance purposes

Member State authorities shall apply market surveillance procedures regarding:

  • lamps: tests are carried out on a sample batch of a minimum of twenty lamps of the same model from the same manufacturer. The average results must not vary from the limit, threshold or declared values by more than 10 %.
  • ballasts and luminaires: tests are carried on one single unit. The results obtained must not exceed the limit values. Otherwise, three more units shall be tested.

Indicative benchmarks

This Regulation establishes indicative benchmarks applicable to the performance of products covered by this Regulation, and to installations using these same products. These benchmarks are established particularly with a view to limiting the light pollution caused by public lighting installations.

This Regulation repeals Directive 2000/55/EC.

Key terms of the Act
  • Fluorescent lamps without integrated ballast: a discharge lamp of the low pressure mercury type in which most of the light is emitted by one or several layers of phosphors excited by the ultraviolet radiation from the discharge, single and double capped without integrated ballast.
  • High intensity discharge lamps: a lamp in which the light is produced, directly or indirectly, by an electric discharge through a gas, a metal vapour or a mixture of several gases and vapours, and in which the light producing arc is stabilised by wall temperature and the arc has a bulb wall loading in excess of 3 watts per square centimetre.
  • Ballast: a device which serves mainly to limit the current of the lamp(s) to the required value.
  • Luminaire: an apparatus which distributes, filters or transforms the light transmitted from one or more light sources and which includes all the parts necessary for supporting, fixing and protecting the light sources and, where necessary, circuit auxiliaries together with the means for connecting them to the supply, but not the light sources themselves.

Reference

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 245/2009

13.4.2009

OJ L 76, 24.3.2009

The successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EC) No 245/2009 have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated versionis for reference only.


Another Normative about Ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for their ballasts

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic

Internal market > Single Market for Goods > Construction

Ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for their ballasts

2 emissions. Moreover, the inappropriate outdoor use of these lamps increases both light pollution and the energy consumption of lighting. This Regulation therefore sets ecodesign requirements for these products with a view to reducing their environmental impact.

Document or Iniciative

Commission Regulation (EC) No 245/2009 of 18 March 2009 implementing Directive 2005/32/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council with regard to ecodesign requirements for fluorescent lamps without integrated ballast, for high intensity discharge lamps, and for ballasts and luminaires able to operate such lamps, and repealing Directive 2000/55/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council (Text with EEA relevance).

Summary

This Regulation lays down the ecodesign rules applicable to certain types of lamps to be used for general lighting, specifically:

  • fluorescent lamps without integrated ballast *;
  • high intensity discharge lamps *;
  • ballasts * and luminaires * able to operate such lamps.

Ecodesign requirements

This Regulation defines ecodesign requirements in three progressive stages (2009, 2012 and 2017), each representing a gradual increase in the targets and/or extending the scope of the requirements to new sub-categories of products. These requirements concern:

  • lamps: they must meet efficacy, performance and information requirements. The different types of lamps must reach a certain luminous efficacy in each wattage category, and meet lamp life and lamp lumen maintenance requirements. Furthermore, manufacturers of lamps are required to provide information concerning, in particular, the wattage, lamp lumen, efficacy, maintenance factor, mercury content, colour rendering index and colour temperature of the lamps.
  • ballasts: they must meet energy performance and information requirements. When the lamps are switched on, the ballasts must comply with minimum efficacy thresholds. In addition, the power consumption of fluorescent lamp ballasts shall not exceed 1.0 W when the connected lamps are switched off. Manufacturers of ballasts are required to provide information on the energy efficiency index of products.
  • luminaires: they must meet energy performance and information requirements. When the lamps are switched on, the power consumption of the luminaires for fluorescent lamps shall not exceed that of the incorporated ballasts. Manufacturers of luminaires are required to provide information on the efficiency of all ballasts and lamps sold with a luminaire, as well as maintenance and disassembly instructions.

Conformity assessment

Manufacturers or their representatives are required to carry out a conformity assessment before placing an energy-using product on the market.

Verification procedures for market surveillance purposes

Member State authorities shall apply market surveillance procedures regarding:

  • lamps: tests are carried out on a sample batch of a minimum of twenty lamps of the same model from the same manufacturer. The average results must not vary from the limit, threshold or declared values by more than 10 %.
  • ballasts and luminaires: tests are carried on one single unit. The results obtained must not exceed the limit values. Otherwise, three more units shall be tested.

Indicative benchmarks

This Regulation establishes indicative benchmarks applicable to the performance of products covered by this Regulation, and to installations using these same products. These benchmarks are established particularly with a view to limiting the light pollution caused by public lighting installations.

This Regulation repeals Directive 2000/55/EC.

Key terms of the Act
  • Fluorescent lamps without integrated ballast: a discharge lamp of the low pressure mercury type in which most of the light is emitted by one or several layers of phosphors excited by the ultraviolet radiation from the discharge, single and double capped without integrated ballast.
  • High intensity discharge lamps: a lamp in which the light is produced, directly or indirectly, by an electric discharge through a gas, a metal vapour or a mixture of several gases and vapours, and in which the light producing arc is stabilised by wall temperature and the arc has a bulb wall loading in excess of 3 watts per square centimetre.
  • Ballast: a device which serves mainly to limit the current of the lamp(s) to the required value.
  • Luminaire: an apparatus which distributes, filters or transforms the light transmitted from one or more light sources and which includes all the parts necessary for supporting, fixing and protecting the light sources and, where necessary, circuit auxiliaries together with the means for connecting them to the supply, but not the light sources themselves.

Reference

Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 245/2009

13.4.2009

OJ L 76, 24.3.2009

The successive amendments and corrections to Regulation (EC) No 245/2009 have been incorporated into the basic text. This consolidated version is for reference only.

Community strategy concerning mercury

Community strategy concerning mercury

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Community strategy concerning mercury

Topics

These categories group together and put in context the legislative and non-legislative initiatives which deal with the same topic.

Food safety > Contamination and environmental factors

Community strategy concerning mercury

Document or Iniciative

Communication from the Commission of 28 January 2005: “Community Strategy concerning Mercury” [COM(2005) 20 final – Official Journal C 52 of 2 March 2005].

Summary

Mercury is a substance highly toxic to humans, ecosystems and wildlife. High doses can be fatal, but even relatively low doses can damage the nervous system.

The purpose of this strategy is to reduce the impact of mercury and the risks it poses for the environment and human health.

It is based on the following six objectives:

  • reducing mercury emissions;
  • cutting the supply of and demand for mercury;
  • managing existing amounts of mercury used in products or in storage;
  • protecting against mercury exposure;
  • improving understanding of the mercury problem and its solutions;
  • promoting international action on mercury.

The strategy identifies a number of specific actions for each objective.

Reducing emissions

The strategy aims mainly to evaluate the implementation of existing legislation (particularly the IPPC Directive), to study the cases of certain sources (small combustion plants, dental amalgam) and to encourage the exchange of information on mercury discharges and the best available prevention and reduction techniques.

Cutting supply and demand

The EU is the world’s biggest exporter of mercury. The Commission intends to propose a ban (by 2011) on the export of mercury from the EU. This ban would be accompanied by assistance to develop new areas of activity in the regions concerned. The Commission also wants to restrict the marketing of non-electrical or electronic measuring and control equipment containing mercury (for example thermometers) by amending Directive 76/769/EEC, and to assess the impact of residual mercury use (in particular in dental amalgams).

Managing surpluses and stocks

Since the permanent disposal of mercury is still too expensive and uncertain, the strategy is to store mercury produced by the chlor-alkali industry (the largest holder of mercury in the EU), and to carry out investigations into the future of mercury already in circulation.

Protecting against exposure

The main source of exposure in developed countries is through inhaling mercury vapour from dental amalgam (this will be studied in more detail, see above); furthermore, methyl mercury (its most toxic form) collects especially in the aquatic food chain (fish, seafood, etc.). This is why the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) is to carry out a study into dietary exposure in vulnerable population groups (pregnant women, children, etc.), particularly people who eat a lot of fish and seafood. The strategy also makes provision for regular communication of additional information concerning mercury in food.

Improving understanding

The Commission is seeking to fill the gaps in our knowledge of mercury through research, the priorities of which will be set out in the 7th Research and Technological Development Framework Programme.

Supporting action at international level

The strategy provides for the Community and the Member States to contribute to the work of international fora and activities, as well as the conclusion of bilateral agreements with third countries, to address the mercury problem world-wide.

Background

Although mercury is released by natural sources such as volcanoes, additional releases from human activity, such as coal burning and use in various products, have led to significant increases in threats to the environment and in mercury deposits.

The main uses at global level, namely gold mining (small-scale mining of essentially alluvial and elluvial gold-bearing deposits to extract the ore in powder, flake or pellet form), batteries and accumulators and the chlor-alkali industry, together account for over 75% of mercury consumption. Of these, the only significant user in the EU is the chlor-alkali industry, but this type of emission will be progressively reduced under the IPPC Directive. Mercury use in gold mining is known to be significant in French Guyana (where the French authorities are considering a ban) but not in the European part of the EU. Directive 91/157/EEC limits the use of mercury in batteries and accumulators.