Our indoor spaces are WAY overlit

Most of our indoor spaces are WAY overlit. I measure it with a lightmeter all the time when I go into buildings, and see many spaces overlit by a factor of 50-100%, relative to national standards. This is an enormous waste of energy. So I decided to try an experiment. Don’t tell anyone, but I went into a kitchen at work and removed half the lamps. Nobody even noticed. The kitchen previously had four fluorescent lamps, each about 30 watts. I removed the four lamps, and replaced them with just two LED lamps, each 18 watts. And the new lighting still meets illumination standards set by the Illuminating Engineering Society. Before the change, the kitchen was using 120 watts (four lamps, each 30 watts). After the change, it is using 36 watts, for energy savings of 70%. Most energy efficiency projects just change the lamps, one-for-one. If I had just changed the four 30-watt lamps for four 18-watt lamps, we would have seen savings of 40%. Instead, the savings are almost double. Putting the RIGHT amount of light in a space, rather than just changing lamps one-for-one, is called right-lighting. I’m a big fan of it. Try it at home, in fact try it at work too. Just don’t tell anyone – see if anyone even notices!.

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