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Free low energy lightbulbs will help public save money and the environment

Monday, 25 June 2018

Minister Boot and Dr AllinsonSome of the Island’s less well-off households are to receive support under a new initiative from the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture (DEFA), which is providing energy efficient LED lightbulbs to help lower their household electricity bill and reduce greenhouse gas emissions on the Island. 

LED lightbulbs use around 90% less energy than traditional lightbulbs, significantly reducing energy consumption and therefore electricity bills.  However, they are more expensive to buy than traditional bulbs, making them difficult to afford for those on low or fixed incomes. 

This new initiative aims to assist people on a low or fixed income by making up to five free lightbulbs available to those who meet one of the following criteria: 

  • In receipt of benefits i.e. income support, income based job seekers allowance, employed persons allowance
  • Disabled occupant or in possession of incapacity benefit/disability living allowance
  • Manx Utilities’ Priority Care register
  • Recipient of Food Bank resources
  • Recipient of town/village ‘Coal Fund’ resources at Christmas
  • Household has inadequate number of light bulbs, reason cited being unable to afford new light bulbs
  • Recipient of financial advice from the Office of Fair Trading
  • Elderly occupant 

Further information about the LED lightbulbs initiative and energy efficiency advice is available online at and on request via Freephone 0808 1624276. 

The Programme for Government sets out a target to reduce the Island’s greenhouse gas emissions, such as CO2. These are generated in a number of ways, such as burning fossil fuels.  The gasses contribute to global warming and the dangerous affect this can have on the Earth’s climate, including changes to weather patterns and higher sea levels. 

Tynwald approved a Climate Challenge Mitigation Strategy in June 2016 which committed the Isle of Man to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80% from 1990 levels by the year 2050. 

To achieve this goal a series of five year plans will be published, the first of which in 2016 proposed initiatives to improve energy efficiency in homes and businesses.  

The energy efficiency website and advice service was launched in December 2017 and offers a one-stop-shop for energy advice and tips as well as details on assistance available.  Work to increase adoption of LED lightbulbs is part of this scheme. 

Minister for Environment, Food and Agriculture, Geoffrey Boot MHK, said:

'Lighting accounts for around 15% of a household’s electricity bill.  Using energy efficient bulbs can reduce this cost dramatically. 

'This means energy efficient lightbulbs are a real win-win: they save households money by reducing electricity consumption and can last many times longer than traditional bulbs.  Less demand for electricity means reduced emissions from our power stations.' 

The Minister added:

'We want to encourage everyone to convert to LED bulbs, but I am particularly pleased we have been able to launch this scheme to assist households which are likely to struggle with the higher cost of the bulbs. 

'I am delighted to have delivery partners including Housing Matters and Manx Utilities which are able to assist us in getting the message and the bulbs out to the people who need them most.' 

Modern LED bulbs match the warmth, brightness and responsiveness of traditional bulbs, but at a fraction of the running cost. 

Dr Alex Allinson MHK, Chairman of Manx Utilities, said:

'Manx Utilities is pleased to support DEFA with this initiative which complements our existing free advice service for those looking for help at home with their energy consumption. 

'By changing from traditional light bulbs to new LED bulbs, households could save more than £5 a year per bulb, depending on the type of bulb and how many hours it is in use.  That is a considerable saving and can quickly add up, meaning the bulbs pay for themselves in the long-run.' 

John Howie, of Housing Matters, said:

'A large number of people that use our service have very limited resources. This initiative will help them to make ends meet.'

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