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CEC is committed to creating a more resilient and just region in the face of climate change. Through our work with the Central Coast Climate Justice Network and elsewhere, our vision includes an end to racial injustices and their resulting environmental inequities.

This is the first installment in CEC’s three-part series on lighting in your home or office, In Parts 2 and 3 we’ll cover the pros and cons of CFLs, and explore the latest in LED technology.

Lighting accounts for about 30% your electricity consumption. That figure makes sense when you think about it – you need light for all sorts of things at home and at work – reading lights, overhead lights, stove lights, outdoor lighting, etc. These are a few of our energy efficiency tips to keep your home and work spaces properly lit while also conserving energy. These tips will work for any light bulb you use, no matter the type:

  1. Let in some daylight!
    Open your blinds, trim trees and hedges in front of windows, and rearrange your space so that task areas are near windows or skylights. By increasing daylighting, you reduce the amount of artificial light and energy needed for everyday tasks.
  2. Use task lighting.
    Use task lighting for desk tops, under cabinets in the kitchen, and in reading areas, etc. to reduce the need for overhead lighting. Task lighting is usually more aesthetically pleasing, and can easily incorporate the use of more efficient bulbs like LEDs.
  3. Remove unnecessary lights.
    Depending on your multi-bulb fixtures, you can likely remove a few bulbs and still maintain adequate lighting levels. This step is great for overhead fluorescent lighting in office and retail settings, especially when combined with Step #2. Dimmers are also a great way to reduce energy use and provide aesthetic or ‘mood’ lighting when a fully-lit space isn’t necessary.
  4. Clean your lights.
    Chances are, if you haven’t changed out your bulbs recently, they’re covered with a layer of dust that is reducing the amount of light being emitted. By dusting the bulbs and the fixtures, you’ll brighten your space and also ensure a longer life of the lamp.
  5. Turn them off.
    Yes, we’ve all heard it. Turning out the lights is the best way to save energy. If you’re not going to be in a room for 10-20 minutes, flick the lights off.

What are some of the ways you conserve energy with lighting around the house?

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