Energy efficiency is changing. For years, if not decades, lighting has been a reliable and relatively easy source of energy savings across sectors. The extremely cost-effective savings, coupled with the commodity nature of lighting, has rightfully earned its reputation as a “bread and butter” measure.
NEEP’s role as a market transformation organization is to move markets. Within the definition of market transformation, which has been developed by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance – our sister-organization in the Northwest - there is the phrase “accelerate the adoption of all cost-effective energy efficiency as a matter of standard practice.” Thanks to the technological and market improvements of LEDs, high-efficiency residential lighting is nearing the position of standard practice. And this market is nearing transformation!
NEEP has managed our Residential Lighting initiative with stakeholders across the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic for several years. Through this process, we have worked to overcome market barriers and to assist in addressing challenges to bring about solutions to accelerate the transformation of the residential lighting market. We are incredibly pleased to report, with the publication of the State of our Sockets Residential Lighting brief, we have good news on the uptake of residential lighting products.
For years, we’ve charted incremental progress, and this year – through the advancements in LEDs and improvements in the new ENERGY STAR specifications – we observe that the fruits of efficiency stakeholder labors are starting to bear out. According to many different indictors, LED technology is taking off and is in the process of widespread adoption. Furthermore, for the most common residential lighting application – the A-style bulb – dozens of products have earned ENERGY STAR certification with a lower lifetime in the 2.0 specification (explained in detail in our January blog post). Once these bulbs are available on store shelves in the coming weeks, we expect them to be available at prices competitive with CFLs and halogen products.
This news, along with updates on smart lighting, fixtures, federal standards, and more, is included in our new brief. At eight pages, it lives up to its name, highlighting the latest and greatest information on the residential lighting market. Please read the brief, join our public webinar (August 9 from 1-1:30 p.m.) and attend our public workshop on September 20 at the EnergizeCT Center in North Haven, Connecticut for further the discussion.
Looking ahead, while it continues to make sense for rate-payer funds to incentivize residential lighting products, especially for low-income and hard-to-reach markets and for “specialty” products, the market will be in a transformed state more quickly than we had anticipated.
As NEEP reports on the success of residential lighting, we’re actively looking around the corner for new efficiency opportunities. These opportunities, though, will not be one-for-one substitutions. As such, efficiency programs need to diversify their portfolios now to be ready for the change ahead. Don’t panic, though, NEEP is here to help!