Following implementation of the Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards (GEMS) Legislation in 2012, specific product requirements are now specified in legislative instruments. Compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) are covered in the GEMS (Self-ballasted Compact Fluorescent Lamps for General Lighting Services) Determination in Australia. Product requirements are set out either directly in the determination or the determination refers to the applicable clause in the product standard.

In New Zealand, the detailed requirements for products included in energy-efficiency regulations are outlined in the relevant Australian/New Zealand current product standards.

MEPS Requirements

From 1 November 2009 in Australia, and 1 October 2012 in New Zealand, self-ballasted CFLs are required to comply with Minimum Energy Performance Standards (MEPS) which are set out in AS/NZS 4847.2. This standard specifies MEPS requirements and related attributes for self-ballasted CFLs with integrated means for controlling, starting and stable operation that are intended for domestic and similar general lighting purposes. AS/NZS 4847.2 applies to self-ballasted lamps of all voltages and wattages irrespective of the type of lamp cap. Test procedures are set out in AS/NZS 4847.1.

In Australia only, tungsten filament and tungsten halogen lamps are also subject to MEPS.

The intention of MEPS for CFLs is to improve the performance of CFLs to ensure that they remain a viable alternative to inefficient incandescent lamps.

As part of the overall MEPS requirements, there are performance specifications for the following CFL attributes which are given in Table 1 of AS/NZS 4847.2:

  • Starting time
  • Run-up time
  • Luminous flux, efficacy and lumen maintenance
  • Power, power factor and harmonics
  • Premature lamp failure rate
  • Low temperature starting
  • Switching withstand
  • Lamp life
  • Colour attributes
  • Mercury content

Alternatively, lamps certified by one of the following programs are also acceptable:

(a) Efficient Lighting Initiative (ELI) Technical Specification for Self Ballasted Compact Fluorescent Lamps, Version 1 dated 01 March 2006 or Version 2 dated 01 March 2011.

(b) UK Energy Saving Trust (EST) Lamp Specification, Version 5, Version 6.1 or Version 7.

NOTE: The performance criteria for the above programs are outlined in Appendix A of AS/NZS 4847.2.

The test report from the chosen programs shall be examined and if some of the attributes from Table 1 (of AS/NZS 4847.2) are not specified then the lamps shall comply with the requirements of Table 1 for the attributes not specified by ELI or EST.

In Australia, the manufacturer or responsible vendor shall provide evidence to their regulatory authority that the CFLs comply with Table 1 for the attributes not specified by ELI or EST.

In New Zealand, the manufacturer or importer shall provide evidence to EECA that the CFLs comply with Table 1 for the attributes not specified by EL1 or EST.

NOTE: Refer to Appendix B of AS/NZS 4847.2 for check testing.

Find out how to make an application for MEPS.

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