1Q 2023

Lighting Bans Will Predominantly Affect the Linear Lamp Market

Energy efficient lighting technologies have historically been exempted from many restrictions on hazardous substances, but bans on light sources containing mercury that are soon going into effect in some regions are likely to become widespread. The negative effects of mercury on human health and the environment are well established and these regulations are not being met with meaningful public resistance.

Though prohibitions on mercury-containing light sources will effectively ban multiple lighting technologies, users of the large global installed base of linear fluorescent lamps will be most affected, increasing demand for linear retrofit LED products. However, these restrictions will primarily impact customers with low interest in investing in lighting, who will respond to decreased product choice in diverse ways. Though current policy developments primarily target light sources that contain mercury, increased scrutiny of facets of sustainability beyond energy efficiency are likely to affect LED products in the future.

This Guidehouse Insights report analyzes opportunities for lighting manufacturers to capitalize on bans on mercury-containing light sources while easing the transition for reluctant customers. It describes the challenges the lighting industry and local communities are likely encounter as new restrictions are implemented, and considers the future trajectory of regulations concerning the sustainability of material used in lighting products.

Pages 16
Tables | Charts | Figures 1
  • Why is mercury used in lighting products and why is it being banned?
  • What types of lighting customers will be most affected by these bans?
  • What challenges are likely to arise as bans on mercury-containing light sources are implemented?
  • Which technologies and product types will these bans have the greatest impact on?
  • How can lighting manufacturers and energy services companies capitalize on the increased demand for LED products that these bans will generate?
  • Lighting manufacturers
  • Lighting industry associations
  • Energy services companies
  • Investor community
  • Sustainability advocates




The Nature of Lighting Restrictions Is Changing

Mercury Enabled Early Energy Efficient Lighting

Mercury Is Toxic

Mercury Is an Environmental Hazard

Mercury Has Been Phased Out of Many Products

Mercury-Containing Light Sources Are Being Banned

Upcoming Restrictions Will Create Opportunities, but Also Uncertainty, for Lighting Manufacturers

Linear Fluorescent Lamp Bans Will Have the Greatest Impact

These Prohibitions Will Affect Reluctant Customers

Consumer Response to Restrictions Will Be Diverse

Some Stockpiling of Legacy Technologies Is Likely

Financially Constrained Consumers Will Continue with Spot Relamping

Others Will Convert Entirely to TLEDs

Some Will Install Integral LED Luminaires

A Nimble Response to Upcoming Bans Must Be Followed by an Ongoing Commitment to Sustainable Use of Materials

Lighting Manufacturers Must Offer a Variety of Replacement Options for the Linear Fluorescent Installed Base

Energy Service Companies Should Target Consumers Affected by Bans

Lighting Vendors and Associations Must Communicate Changes in Technology Availability with the Public

Governments and Hazardous Waste Handlers Should Prepare for Mass Fluorescent Lamp Disposal

The Lighting Industry Should Proactively Assess the Sustainability of Materials Used in All Lighting Hardware

  • Market Penetration of CFLs and Linear Fluorescent Lamps, United States: Q1 2017 to Q1 2022
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