Department of Energy Issues Buy American Waiver for Fluorescent Electronic Lighting Ballasts
On February 11, 2010, the Department of Energy (DOE) issued a decision for a categorical waiver for fluorescent electronic lighting ballasts. This decision is based on their evaluation that these products are not produced or manufactured in the United States in sufficient and reasonably available quantities and of a satisfactory quality (“nonavailability”). Fluorescent electronic ballasts qualify for this waiver and not required to meet the Buy American requirements regardless of their country of origin for projects funded by the Department of Energy. Based on the information in the DOE memorandum of decision, Emergency ballasts (or battery packs) designed to operate fluorescent lamps also qualify for this waiver.
For contracts that require products with a minimum of 50% domestic material content, the fluorescent electronic ballast would not be considered based on the nonavailablity waiver for that component.
This determination excludes electronic dimming ballasts for fluorescent lamps that are capable of operating the lamps below 50% of their rated light output.
Please note that other federal agencies may apply different requirements and state or municipal projects may apply unique requirements.