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July 16, 2011

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Home » Metro » Environment

City plans limits on bright LED boards

SHANGHAI will amend a law to tighten control on light pollution caused by electronic light-emitting diode boards, which many drivers are complaining are too bright and affect their vision.

Officials from the Shanghai Greenery and Public Sanitation Bureau said the draft of an amended urban lighting regulation includes LED management and will be finalized soon.

The original regulation, issued in 2004, didn't cover LED technology, which was new and rare at the time, officials said.

Li Shuzhi of the Shanghai Research Center of Engineering and Technology for Solid-State Lighting said the center started research on LED boards when more commercial LED boards were installed in the city in 2008.

He said there are at least 1,000 LED boards in Shanghai. "There are over 100 such boards along downtown Huaihai Road," he said.

"LED technology has been mature enough to generate super bright light. Advertisers prefer brighter boards to be seen far away, while the key is how to properly use it," Li said.

"LED boards must consider visible angle and brightness to reduce glare," Li said.

Doctors say prolonged viewing of LED boards can harm people's eyes. Professionals suggested the brightness of LED boards should be reduced by two thirds at night and that limits should be imposed on how long the boards are on at night.

Other cities have regulated or are considering the brightness of LED boards.

A law in Beijing enacted in 2008 mandated the position of electronic boards, brightness at night and daytime brightness based on sunlight intensity.


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