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“Kerala bans CFL and filament bulbs”

  • Category
  • Published
    20th Feb, 2020

Kerala will impose a ban on the sale of compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) and incandescent (filament) bulbs starting November this year as part of sustainable energy policy.


Kerala will impose a ban on the sale of compact fluorescent lamps (CFL) and incandescent (filament) bulbs starting November this year as part of sustainable energy policy.

Filament-free project:

  • The announcement is in line with the government project of ‘Filament-free Kerala’ envisaged in 2018 as part of the state’s Urja Kerala mission.
  • Filament Free Kerala project is for replacing the entire Incandescent Lamps & CFLs of domestic consumers in the state by energy-efficient LED bulbs.
  • The project is implemented by the Kerala State Electricity Board Ltd. and Energy Management Centre, Kerala.

In 2018, Kerala has launched 'Urja Kerala Mission', an aggressive Energy generation and Conservation program - aimed at the integrated development of the electricity sector in the state. It aims at implementing FIVE important projects-Soura, Filament free Kerala, Dyuthi 2021, Transgrid 2.0 and e-safe. 

 Reason behind the ban:

  • The mercury in a fluorescent bulb can be released as both dust and vapour if the light is broken.
  • This toxic element is dangerous to people and animals and can easily migrate through the environment in the air, water and soil.
  • LED bulbsuse about 40% less power than fluorescent lights, and 80% less than incandescent lights, to produce the same amount of light. 

Difference between CFL, Incandescent and LED:






Usually 6,000 to 15,000 hours. Up to 35,000 hours.

2,000 hours

20,000 to 50,000 hours

How they work

Fluorescent bulbs generate light by sending an electrical discharge through an ionized gas.

Incandescent light is emitted by heating the filament present in the bulb

The LED is a light source which uses semiconductors and electroluminescence to create light. 

Materials used

Argon, mercury vapour, tungsten, barium, strontium and calcium oxides

Argon, tungsten, filaments

Gallium arsenide (GaAs) and gallium phosphide (GaP)



  • Cannot be used with a dimmer switch
  • Take a few moments to heat up and reach full brightness
  • Contain mercury, a toxic heavy metal
  • Can be sensitive to cold temperatures
  • energy inefficient
  • short lamp lifetime i.e. about 1000 hours typically
  • warm source of light and hence requires air conditioning to cool the room


  • Directional light that may not spread as evenly as other sources
  • Currently cost more than CFLs

 Why LEDs?

  • Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) use about 75% less energy than a typical incandescent bulb
  • LEDs contain no mercury and have a much smaller environmental impact compared to CFL bulbs
  • LED Light lasts up to 50 times longer than the conventional halogen light bulb and 10 times longer than a CFL light bulb
  • LED Lights are instant on so they do not require any warm-up time compared to other light bulbs
  • LEDs don’t give off heat making it cooler to operate and may even lower your A/C Bill.
  • Switching to LEDs can reduce electricity and maintenance costs of a commercial building by up to 30%
  • An incandescent lamp converts about 10% of the energy fed to it into the light, whereas LEDs convert nearly 100% of the energy they consume as light. LED lights are way more cost-effective than traditional incandescent.

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