Governments around the world have passed measures to phase out incandescent light bulbs for general lighting in favor of more energy-efficient lighting alternatives. Phase-out regulations effectively ban the manufacture, importation or sale of incandescent light bulbs for general lighting. The regulations would allow sale of future versions of incandescent bulbs if they are sufficiently energy efficient.
Brazil and Venezuela started the controversial phase-out in 2005, and the European Union, Switzerland, and Australia started to phase them out in 2009. Likewise, other nations are implementing new energy standards or have scheduled phase-outs: Argentina,and Russia in 2012, and the United States, Canada,Mexico, Malaysia and South Korea in 2014.
Objections to replacement of incandescent lamps for general lighting mainly include the higher purchasing cost of alternative light bulbs. To mitigate the effects of these concerns, various programs have been put in place ranging from subsidies for lamps to improved standards for measurement of performance and for labelling products. Manufacturers develop fluorescent lamps with reduced mercury content compared to original designs, and recycling programs are intended to prevent mercury release. New lamp types offer improved starting characteristics, and dimmable types are available.
The UK government announced in 2007 that incandescent bulbs would be phased out by 2011.In 2008, the Irish government announced a phase-out of the sale of any light bulbs with a luminous efficiency of less than 16 lumens per watt. Shortly afterwards, all agreed to a progressive phase-out of incandescent light bulbs by 2012.The initial Europe wide ban only applied to general-purpose, non-directional incandescent bulbs, so did not affect any bulbs with reflective surfaces (e.g. spotlightsand halogen down lighters) or special purpose bulbs including those used in devices such as household appliances, traffic lights, infrared lamps and automotive lighting. The sale of the most inefficient bulbs was phased out. The first types to go were non-clear (frosted) bulbs, which were taken off the market in September 2009. Also from September 2009 clear bulbs over 100 W were made of more efficient types. This limit was moved down to lower wattages, and the efficiency levels raised by the end of 2012.
In practice, some manufacturers and retailers have found a loophole in the new rules so that some incandescents are still available, marketed as “rough-service” or “shock-resistant” bulbs for industrial use only. Such bulbs are widely available in markets and hardware stores at much lower cost than official alternatives such as CFLs. They also offer improved safety for users by having a faster reaction time, and so users can see hazards when entering a room for example. Since first bans were introduced however, prices of these bulbs have risen by 20–25%. A German importer simply reclassified the lamps as “mini heaters”branded “Heatballs“.
The EU set a target of 2016 to phase out halogen bulbs, with any bulb available for purchase after the 2016 date requiring at least a ‘B’ energy rating.This phase-out has been postponed until 2018.
SOURCE – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phase-out_of_incandescent_light_bulbs