It is with mixed emotions that I write this blog to bid adieu to one of the hallmarks of energy efficiency, residential lighting. While homes across the region and nation still have inefficient lighting technologies installed, the market transformation path for this measure is all but inevitable, and the need for NEEP’s continued thought leadership has ended.
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.
After much pageantry and ceremony, a new LED is on course to de-throne the “traditional” options in efficient residential lighting. A new class of LEDs - with lifetimes lower than those that currently wear the ENERGY STAR mark - are set to replace traditional LEDs and CFLs in the residential lighting market.
The term Market Transformation gets tossed around a fair amount in the energy efficiency sphere, but what does it actually mean? And how can it be fully achieved? Our friends over at NEEA, a fellow REEO and respected authority on the subject, devised a definition for the term with equal parts elegance and accuracy:
We know the future will be bright for the residential lighting market, but just how efficient will it be?
Residential lighting has long been at the heart of ratepayer-funded energy efficiency program portfolios. In New England, residential lighting measures have produced over 30 percent of all efficiency program savings. The large savings potential along with the relatively low barriers to getting bulbs into sockets makes lighting the classic low hanging fruit.
LEDs are steadily moving to the forefront of retail shelves as energy efficiency programs continue to financially support their widespread adoption. With the cheapest ENERGY STAR certified LEDs costing about $10 each, efficiency program rebates are necessary if prices are to come close to other alternatives. Strong signals, however, are indicating that the LED invasion is beginning to gain some ground.