Lighting is an important component of the built environment at work and at home. Recent scholarly research into the health effects of ergonomic design have established a definitive link between improved lighting design and a 27 percent reduction in the incidence of headaches, which accounts for 0.7 percent of the overall cost of employee health insurance. This equals approximately $70 per employee annually, according to a study conducted by Heschong Mahone Group, Inc. The U.S. Green Building Council reports that lighting a home accounts for roughly five percent of its total energy usage—for the average U.S. family, that equates to around $110 each year.
While indoor lighting is one of the areas that may improve by incorporating best sustainable design practices into new building design through the use of openings, windows, and reflective surfaces; changing indoor lightbulbs is a quick and easy way to conserve energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions at work and at home.
On January 1, 2014, in keeping with a law passed by Congress in 2007, the old familiar tungsten-filament 40 and 60-watt incandescent lightbulbs were no longer manufactured in the U.S. The reasoning for that was because those bulbs did not meet federal energy efficiency standards. The phase out of the traditional incandescent lightbulbs across the U.S. was great news for energy efficiency and the environment. National Geographic states that Compact Fluorescent Lightbulbs or CFLs, and Light Emitting Diodes or LEDs, not only offer more efficiency but also more durability. The standard LED tends to last about five times more than CFLs and almost 60 times more than incandescent lightbulbs, according to Design Recycle, Inc.
The newest and latest technology in LEDs has presented consumers with the ability to not only program, but also adjust the individual hue, intensity, and even color some of the light bulbs emit. Most of these programmable LEDs can be linked together and are usually controlled by a mobile device. The LIfx™ LED programmable lightbulbs allow individuals to choose between millions of colors or 1,000 shades of white.
By Efrain Esparza, ESG Editor