Circular Lighting Report

Online firms ‘can dodge EU green laws’

mobile phone online selling

ONLINE SELLERS of luminaires can avoid European sustainability, circular and other legislation thanks to a loophole in the new Digital Services Act, Lighting Europe has warned.

Trade body LightingEurope said it was disappointed to see that what will serve as the key framework to regulate digital services for the years to come ‘fails to ensure that what is illegal offline is also illegal online, by choosing not to clearly allocate liability for all forms of non-compliance online when there is no economic operator in the EU’.

Last year the association conducted a mystery shopping exercise which showed that out of the 30 lighting products proposed by the platform’s algorithms and delivered to the its headquarter, 77 per cent did not comply with EU mandatory requirements.

LightingEurope believes it undermines both the world-wide credibility and impact of EU rules and the competitiveness of EU-based economic operators.

“What is the value of creating legislation on product safety, sustainability, or quality if online there’s no obligation to have an economic actor within the EU jurisdiction who can be held liable?’ Ourania Georgoutsakou, secretary general of LightingEurope, told the Circular Lighting Report.

LightingEurope believes that the DSA must hold accountable online platforms that facilitate transactions between traders and end-users via a strong liability regime.

LightingEurope had proposed that these platforms should not be exempt from liability when:

• they are aware of an illegal activity on their interfaces and do not take immediate action; or

• they exert a decisive influence on the trader or the transaction; or

• there is no party based in the EU that can be held liable for an illegal activity online on their platform; or

• they do not comply with their own DSA due diligence obligations, such as the know-your-business customer obligation.

Full results of the LightingEurope online mystery shopper exercise are available on its website.

Ray Molony

Recolight Report is an independent guide to the latest developments in sustainable and circular lighting. Learn about the people, products, projects and processes that are shaping our industry’s low carbon future. Plus: explainers on the latest innovations, opinion from thought leaders and video interviews with leading disruptors. Edited by lighting expert, editor and industry figure Ray Molony.