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5 Ways Fluorescent Lighting Saves Energy and the Environment

Jul 22, 2008
Saving energy helps the environment because most energy sources, such as coal and natural gas are non-renewable. This means that once used, they are gone forever. Additionally, most forms of energy cause pollution that can be a source of greenhouse gases leading to climate change.

A simple explanation of how fluorescent bulbs work will illustrate 5 examples of how using fluorescent bulbs will help us save energy and the environment.

How Fluorescent Light Bulbs Work

Fluorescent lighting is manufactured by enclosing gas within glass tubes. Electricity excites the gas, producing light when the gas fluoresces. The fluorescent reaction produces ultraviolet light that is invisible to the human eye. Visible light is created when the UV light subsequently reacts with mercury and phosphorescent chemicals that have also been enclosed in the tube.

Fluorescent light bulbs are available to fit most existing fixtures and offer one of the most energy efficient electric lighting solutions available today.

Here are 5 examples of how fluorescents help save energy and the environment:

1. A greater proportion of the electricity consumed is directly used to produce light, resulting in conservation of energy sources and reduced pollution.

2. Fluorescent lights run cooler than incandescent and so they reduce the costs associated with running air conditioning.

3. The longer life of fluorescents will reduce the number of used bulbs in landfills, particularly since it has been shown that most people will properly recycle fluorescent bulbs when given the opportunity.

4. The EPA estimates that most of the 104 metric tons of mercury introduced into the atmosphere each year by humans is released by coal fired electric plants. Fluorescent light bulbs emit no mercury unless broken or improperly disposed of. Additionally, manufacturers are developing bulbs that operate with much less mercury than older bulbs.

5. Assuming that the lower costs of operating fluorescents will not increase the perceived need for light, consumers should use less electricity if they convert to fluorescent lighting when appropriate.

Just based on these facts alone, we can see that converting to a fluorescent lighting society is best for everyone. Businesses and consumers will both save money and energy, benefiting not only the environment, but also the budget.

It may be too late to completely avoid problems like global warming, but there is no need to abuse electricity and energy. Anything that we can do to decrease landfill waste is also a huge plus, as we are slowly running out of room to dump our garbage. Simply by switching from incandescent and halogen lighting to fluorescent lighting, you are doing your part to help the Earth.
About the Author
The Energy Superstore was developed with a singular purpose: to enable residential, business and industrial customers to save energy in the most efficient and cost effective ways possible. With over 40 years of experience, we provide many tools including energy audits, products, and recommendations.

Compact Fluorescent Lighting, LED Light Bulbs, Dimmable CFLs, Energy Audits, and much more from your Energy Saving Superstore.
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