Everyone knows that using less electricity saves you money.
What many people don’t realize is that, by converting your household lighting from incandescent or compact fluorescent to LED, you’ll have a positive impact on the planet. Everyone know
s that incandescent light is expensive, but it also contributes to your carbon footprint in other ways. Because the bulbs are rapidly consumable in comparison to LED, their manufacture and shipping consumes resources and produces greenhouse gases, which are the chief contributor to climate change. All of the electricity used by an incandescent fixture that isn’t converted to light is radiated as waste heat. In warmer climates, this can radically affect the amount of energy required for air conditioning, again contributing pollution in the form of carbon emissions to the environment.
The United States Federal Government, in enacting the US Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, identified inefficient lighting technology as a matter of national security. Since lighting accounts for approximately 20% of the strain placed on American electrical generation capacity, which can be strained during periods of peak usage, it was targeted as one of the areas where stricter laws could make a difference. As a result, incandescent light bulbs are being phased out, with manufacturers required to develop more energy efficient technology if they wish to sell light bulbs in the US.
The most common replacement for the incandescent bulb has been the Compact Fluorescent light bulb. Often seen as the “curly bulb”, it packs an electrical ballast into an Edison screw base, and “folds” the gas charged tube into the shape of a conventional light bulb.
While this bulb is considerably more energy efficient than an incandescent, and lasts a lot longer, performance on both these levels is exceeded by LED source lighting. In addition, CFL bulbs contain Mercury, which is an environmental contaminant and hazardous to human health.
Far and away the best lighting technology from an environmental perspective, Solid State LED lighting is the household light source of the future. For years, it’s been coming. Today, after a decade of steady improvement, the technology is indeed ready to light our homes.
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