The ban will come into force on 1 July 2013 and applies to both interior lighting and the external lighting of building facades.
Shops and commercial properties have to:
- Turn off interior lighting in offices one hour after staff leave the premises
- Switch lighting in shop windows and commercial premises off between 1 am and 7 am
- Turn facade lighting off no later than 1 am.
These measures are expected to save around 2 TWh per year of energy – equivalent to the electricity consumption of around 750,000 households – and save 250,000 tonnes of CO2 a year.
There are exceptions to the new law including holidays and Christmas illuminations and certain tourist attractions.
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