On the very last day of 2014, the Department of Energy (DOE) released new energy efficiency standards for linear fluorescent lights that will lower the electric bills of virtually every office building, school, and hospital across the country by $15 billion through 2030. The new DOE standards are a big deal as there are billions of these tubular lights in place and they are often on for 12 or more hours a day.
These lighting standards culminate a very successful energy-saving year by DOE, which finalized minimum energy efficiency standards for 10 product categories ranging from commercial refrigeration equipment to furnace fans to external power supplies (the ubiquitous little black box chargers needed to power our laptop computers and cell phones). According to DOE, these 10 standards will eliminate 435 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions from power plants, the largest source of climate change pollution in the United States and save America’s businesses and families $78 billion in electricity bills through 2030.
And this lighting standard for what is known in the industry as “General Service Fluorescent Lamps” was worth waiting for as it represents the greatest energy (and financial) savings of all those set in 2014.