Getting lighting right is important for the energy efficiency of a school and the well-being of its occupants. Up to 40% of a building's electricity use is accounted for by lighting, while the right level and quality of light improves the alertness and accuracy of those working in it.
Ways to improve your school's lighting include:
- Choose the most efficient lighting possible. Upgrade existing light bulbs and fluorescent tubes to low energy LED tubes and lights. LED lighting reduces energy use and heat output, eliminates flicker and hum, extends lamp life (by up to 50%) and can allow dimming – all of which can make a classroom more comfortable. Make sure this happens by including it in the school’s purchasing policy.
- Occupancy sensors: By dimming or switching off lighting when there is nobody in a room occupancy sensors can reduce electricity use by 30%.
- Daylight sensors: Adjusting the artificial lighting according to the amount of natural light in a room using daylight sensors or photocells can reduce electricity use by up to 40%.
- Maintenance plan: By regularly cleaning windows and skylights you can reduce the need for artificial light. Cleaning the fixtures that contain lamps, known as luminaires, will improve their performance.
Earn your Energy Sparks points for this activity by implementing a change to your purchasing policy to ensure every failed light is replaced with an LED equivalent or by installing lighting controls. For replacing all the lights in a school, some grants and green financing schemes are available.