Global CSOs Call on G7 Ministers to Commit to 2025 Mercury-Free Lighting Transition

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KYOTO – A letter from the Clean Lighting Coalition, Climate Action Network, and Kiko Network urges G7 Ministers to commit to a global LED transition by 2025 – despite Japan’s attempts to stall global progress. A 2025 phase out of all fluorescent bulbs will cumulatively avoid 3.3 Gt of CO2 emissions and save US $1.34 trillion in electricity bills by 2050.

G7 countries must shift all lighting sales to LED by 2025 to stay on track with International Energy Agency’s Net Zero Emissions Scenario, and in support of the G7’s 2022 commitment to “a fully or predominantly decarbonized power sector by 2035”, says the letter.

Fluorescent lamps are an outdated, inefficient lighting technology containing mercury – a toxic chemical. LED technology has outpaced fluorescents, offering significant energy and emissions mitigation that will accelerate progress towards climate commitments. Replacing fluorescents with clean, efficient LED lighting is a cost-effective, concrete action to mitigate CO2 and mercury emissions globally.

Despite the global movement shifting phase-out fluorescent by 2025, Japan and its lighting industry (JLMA) are attempting to stall the global LED transition. Each year the phase out of linear fluorescents is delayed after 2025 significantly diminishes global benefits – approximately 300 Mt of CO2 emissions are lost for each year of delay.

Japan has fallen behind in the LED transition due to factors such as misalignment with international safety standards and lack of sufficient LED alternatives. Instead of blocking the global movement to LEDs, Japan should support the 2025 phase out date, or apply for an exemption to allow the country’s LED market to catch up, while not hindering international progress.

By supporting the 2025 transition to LED, the G7 will signal a united commitment to climate and mercury mitigation – as mercury-containing fluorescent lamp phase-out dates will be discussed at the Minamata Convention on Mercury fifth Conference of Parties (COP5) in Geneva later this year.

The Minamata Convention on Mercury is the most recent global agreement on environment and health, adopted in 2013. It is named after the bay in Japan where, in the mid-20th century, mercury-tainted industrial wastewater poisoned thousands of people. The dangerous levels of mercury exposure via the wastewater led to severe health damage that became known as the “Minamata disease” At COP-5 in October, 140 Parties to the Convention have the opportunity to phase out linear fluorescent lamps (LFLs) – the largest contributor to lighting-based mercury pollution in the world. G7 countries must not miss this vital opportunity to protect the health of people and the planet.

Media Contacts

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About the Clean Lighting Coalition: The Clean Lighting Coalition is a global partnership coordinated by CLASP to capture the health and environmental benefits of eliminating mercury-based lighting. To learn more, visit and follow the Coalition on Twitter and LinkedIn.