The Commission opens a consultation on the future of LED-based lighting

The European Commission adopted a Green Paper and launched a public consultation on the future of LED-based lighting. The consultation has been launched because although LED lighting is one of the most energy-efficient and versatile forms of lighting,Europe also faces a number of challenges and more input is needed from citizens and businesses to refine the policy. To this end a consultation will run until 29 February 2012 to collect feedback on the Commission's ideas.

The public consultation launched by the Commission intends to find out how to better promote the LED-based lighting. According to the European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes, the need of expanding LED lighting is a 'no-brainer'. It means more money in our pockets, and a healthier planet. The consultation is therefore open to get ideas on how to speed up its deployment and maximise the number of jobs and savings Europe can gain from expanding the use of LED lighting.

In the next few years about 8 billion incandescent lamps in European homes, offices and streets will need to be replaced by more energy efficient lighting solutions, with the phasing out of the sale of traditional light bulbs in the EU by September 2012. These include LED and organic LED (or OLED) lighting technologies also known as Solid State Lighting (SSL). However, LED lighting faces a number of challenges in the market: high purchase prices because it is a more sophisticated technology compared to the alternatives, lack of familiarity among potential users and a lack of common standards.

Among the questions, the public consultation asks which actions would help to overcome existing barriers and accelerate LED deployment in Europe or how to ensure good quality and safe LED products on the European market that meet consumer expectations. The Commission also wants to know how to reinforce cooperation of the lighting sector with architects, lighting designers, electrical installers and the construction and buildings sectors and how can the EU best support entrepreneurship and competitiveness in the lighting sector.