Co-op Lighting Lessons
Article was added on Wednesday, October 02, 2013
As federal efficiency
standards phase out traditional incandescent lightbulbs, electric
co-ops are testing which lighting technologies work best for
consumers. Co-ops like Santee Electric has long championed compact
fluorescent lamps (CFLs), the first cost-effective, energy-saving
alternative to traditional bulbs.
We give away CFLs at our annual meetings and other member
events. We see them as a quick, low-cost way our members can
start saving on their electric bills.
By 2014, household lightbulbs using between 40-W to 100-W will
need to consume at least 28 percent less energy than traditional
incandescents. Because incandescents use 90 percent of their energy
producing heat, upgrading saves Americans an estimated $6 billion
to $10 billion in lighting costs every year.
More lighting changes will roll out in coming years. The federal
Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 requires that
lightbulbs become 70 percent more efficient than classic bulbs by
2020 (LEDs already exceed this goal.)
Lighting accounts for roughly 13 percent of an average
household's electric bill. Hardware store shelves are filled with
lightbulb options. What works best for co-op members?
A helpful addition to lighting products is the Lighting Facts
Label. Much like nutrition labels found on the back of food
packages, this version shows a bulb's brightness, appearance, life
span, and estimated yearly cost. The Lighting Facts Label was
created by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to help consumers
understand the product and buy the most efficient lightbulb.
Consumers' energy-efficient lighting options include:
- Halogen incandescents: Use 25 percent less energy,
last three times longer than regular incandescent bulbs
- CFLs:Use 75 percent less energy, last up to 10 times
- LEDs: Use between 75 percent and 80 percent less energy,
last up to 25 times longer
Federal lightbulb standards have the potential to save consumers
billions of dollars each year. For an average American house with
about 40 light fixtures, changing just 15 bulbs can save about $50
a year per household, according to DOE.
A word of warning when purchasing new types of bulbs: You
generally get what you pay for.
To learn about lighting options, visit
energysavers.gov/lighting. For shopping tips visit
Floyd L. Keels
President and Chief Executive Officer
<< Back to the News and Press Listing