Smart lighting could contribute to cheaper electricity prices

If you have ever wondered how to reduce electricity prices paid by your business, then the answer could be in the type of lighting you use. Companies have been under pressure for some time to swap out traditional incandescent light bulbs for more efficient alternatives, but the latest research suggests that the future could lie with smart lighting.

Gartner revealed that smart lighting has the potential to lower energy costs by as much as 90 per cent, and uptake is already starting to gather pace among global businesses.

The current state of the smart lighting market

Figures from Gartner show that as many as 46 million smart lighting units will be installed this year, before increasing considerably to reach 2.54 billion units in just five years' time.

Time to address lighting in your office space.Time to address lighting in your office space.

However, the group suggested that simply installing the lighting isn't enough. Instead, a five-pronged approach is needed: LED smart lighting technology, connectivity, sensors and controls, analytics and intelligence.

Giving users the opportunity to better control their lighting systems means they can make important changes that ultimately lead to a reduction in energy costs. Research Vice-President at Gartner Dean Freeman said there is no shortage of reasons to put more than just the smart lighting system in place.

"Energy savings of up to 50 percent have been well-documented in many installations, and they are difficult to resist when replacing incandescent or high-intensity discharge systems in a warehouse," he commented.

"In a fluorescent installation, energy cost savings of up to 25 percent can be achieved, along with considerable savings in lighting maintenance."

Giving users the opportunity to better control their lighting systems means that they can make important changes that ultimately lead to a reduction in energy costs.

Other ways lighting can reduce costs

Not every business is in the position to revert to smart lighting, but this doesn't mean that there aren't improvements to be made. The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) recommends that some simple behavioural changes could be all that's needed to bring down electricity prices.

For example, the GBCA suggests making sure that the last person to leave the building switches off all the lights before they leave. If they are left on for several hours, it leads to an increase in energy bills that could otherwise be avoided.

Another idea is to take part in the CitySwitch program. This is designed to help commercial office tenants improve their energy efficiency by implementing a range of different services. Various resources are available to any participating business in a bid to help them achieve a better NABERS energy rating.

NABERS operates on a six-star rating scale, with a reading of four or higher indicating above-average performance. Addressing lighting within a business is just one way to improve the rating of the premises.

Posted by Richard West