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Feb 10 2012

DOE Report Shows Shift to Energy-Saving Lighting Products

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has released a report that documents the increased adoption of energy-efficient lighting products in the United States over the last decade. The 2010 U.S. Lighting Market Characterization examines the current conditions and broad trends in the U.S. lighting market, broken down by technology and sector. The report also details specific products, including comprehensive and detailed estimates of the national inventory of installed lighting products, as well as their performance characteristics, associated energy use, and lumen production – a measure of brightness. The report helps chart progress made toward the goal of transitioning to more energy-efficient lighting technologies across four sectors: residential buildings, commercial buildings, industrial buildings, and outdoor applications.

The study shows that in 2010, lighting used approximately 700 terawatt-hours (TWh), or nearly19% of the electricity produced in the United States. Of the total energy used for lighting, the commercial sector consumed nearly half, or 349 TWh, primarily with fluorescent lighting products. While there are nearly 6 billion light bulbs installed in the residential sector, far more than the approximately 2 billion lamps in the commercial buildings sector, the mostly incandescent residential lamps were not used nearly as much per day, on average, as lights in the commercial sector.

The new report is an update to a similar DOE report that modeled the 2001 U.S. lighting market inventory. During the intervening decade, two overarching trends emerged:

  • Push toward energy-saving lighting – Investment in more efficient technologies, higher efficiency standards, and public awareness campaigns helped shift the market toward more energy-efficient lighting technologies across all sectors. The average system efficacy – a measure of the amount of light provided per watt of power consumed – of installed lighting increased from 45 lumens per watt in 2001 to 58 lumens per watt in 2010, due mainly to a move from incandescent to compact fluorescent lamps in the residential sector, and from T12 to more-efficient T8 and T5 fluorescent lamps in the commercial and industrial sectors.
  • Increased demand for light – The total number of light bulbs installed in U.S. stationary applications grew from just under 7 billion in 2001 to more than 8 billion in 2010. Most of this growth occurred in the residential sector, primarily because of an increase in the number of households, which increased from under 107 million in 2001 to more than 113 million in 2010, and a rise in the number of sockets per household from an average of 43 to an average of 51.

For more information, download the report.

DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy invests in clean energy technologies that strengthen the economy, protect the environment, and reduce America’s dependence on foreign oil. Learn more about DOE’s support of research and development of energy-efficient solid-state lighting, and visit our Energy Savers lighting choices website to start saving money by saving energy.

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