Originally published on Sustainnovate.
The US Department of Energy closed out 2014 with a huge bang… but one that few people noticed. It released new energy efficiency standards for linear fluorescent lights. What does this mean exactly? Noah Horowitz of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) notes that the new standards “will lower the electric bills of virtually every office building, school, and hospital across the country by $15 billion through 2030.” $15 billion! Simply thanks to more efficient lighting, and a requirement by the Department of Energy to switch to these more efficient lights.
Horowitz notes that there are actually about 2.5 billion of these linear fluorescent lights installed across the US. Located in offices, schools, shops, hospitals, and more, they are typically on for many hours a day.
“Next time you are in your conference room, a grocery store or visiting your child’s school, look up and you will see 2 to 4 foot long fluorescent tubes illuminating the room,” Horowitz notes. “Fluorescent lighting accounts for 60 to 70 percent of the total electricity consumed by lighting in commercial and industrial buildings in the United States.”
The “General Service Fluorescent Lamps” standards will go into effect in three years, at the beginning of 2018. In short, they require that new lamps of this type be 4% more efficient than those on the market today, and that they be 23% more efficient than those sold before 2012. In other words, progress is moving along fast!
“The new lamps are a simple drop-in replacement and will give off the same amount of light and work just as well as the current, less efficient ones.”
Image Credit: Toshihiro Oimatsu (CC BY 2.0 license)
Reprinted with permission.
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