Friday, July 24, 2015

What LED Really Stands For: Lessening Environmental Destruction

Light Emitting Diode (LED) bulbs are one way we can help slow down climate change, while improving our quality of life and saving money. The Alliance to Save Energy released a study that claims lighting comprises 22% of the total electricity use in the United States, and that eliminating incandescent bulbs would save $18 billion dollars each year! Incandescent bulbs are currently being phased out of use in the United States. One of the things that the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 did was that it increased efficiency standards for incandescent bulbs, causing many low-efficiency bulbs to be banned from being manufactured. Though this bill created higher standards for bulb manufacturers, many people still use incandescent bulbs or have switched to compact fluorescent bulbs (CFLs). The most energy-efficient and cost-effective light bulbs available are LEDs. When I initially purchased LED bulbs, I was put off by the higher cost relative to other light bulbs. Reading more about LED bulbs, I learned that the slightly higher initial investment would actually save me a lot of money, and help the environment.

LED bulbs are more energy efficient than other light bulb types. They use 80%-90% less electricity than traditional lighting. The long life and durability of LED bulbs furthers the savings and reduces the hassle of constantly changing light bulbs. The average LED bulb has a life of 100,000 operational hours, in other words, if you left an LED bulb on for 24 hours a day, it would last for over 11 years! While they may seem expensive at first, LED bulbs, save money in the long run. There are many programs around the United States that give households some free LED bulbs, so check with your local electric company to see if there are any programs available in your area.

In addition to the money and lower energy consumption you get with LED bulbs, they are physically less harmful to the environment than other energy efficient bulbs such as CFLs. LEDs contain no toxic substances such as the mercury present in CFLs. The long life of LED bulbs will lower the amount of light bulbs you have to replace and recycle.

Other benefits of LED bulbs include brightening immediately, better light dispersal, higher quality light with lower electricity, a lower operating temperature, and reliable quality that is not temperature-dependent. LED bulbs also do not emit UV radiation like CFLs and other bulbs, which damage skin cells and greatly affects those with conditions such as lupus. I hope you see that LEDs are good for your wallet, health and the environment, and you consider looking into the benefits of them more through the following:

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