It is highly accepted that lighting in the workplace is highly important, as 80% of our sensory inputs come through our eyes at work. In addition to that, we can now use lighting technology to create a more productive work space with benefits for both the business and the health and well-being of the staff.
Although, lighting may use as much as 40% of an office building’s electricity, it only represents a tiny fraction of a business labour’s costs. A quick fix that spoils the lighting design can compromise productivity, and lead to staff having to work longer hours because their effectiveness and concentration has been ruined.
A quick fix was sought in a number of cases in the past. At the present, T5 high efficiency linear fluorescent lighting are capable of delivering a system efficacy in excess of 80 lumens per watt, while the very best LED lighting solutions are achieving 60-65 lumens per system watt, and matching the colour rendering and consistency of a good fluorescent lamp can significantly reduce this figure. There is also the danger that future legislation covering the energy use of lighting might encourage the use of ‘quick fixes’ by relying too heavily on energy efficiency numbers.
There have been a number of studies carried out over the last few years surrounding the use of fluorescent lighting with very high correlated colour temperatures, where the light is almost blue. The basic premise being pursued by blue lighting is to emulate daylight, which changes in both intensity and colour from sunrise to sunset.
Different studies published since 2007 have demonstrated that blue-enriched artificial lighting was beneficial to the subjects exposed to it. Participants of these studies reported improved productivity, fatigue reduction, greater alertness, better sleep patterns and reductions in eye strain. Confirming all of them that this ‘blue sky’ approach to lighting is more effective in its purpose than more conventional solutions, and fortunately we can do it with LEDs as well.
Therefore, if we build on our understanding of lighting in the workplace and we improve the way it is delivered, we could even work fewer hours to the same result, which would be an effective energy reduction measure!
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Envido is the UK’s leading provider of energy, low-carbon and sustainability solutions for private and public sector organisations.
We help our clients reduce their carbon emissions - helping them to conserve energy, save money and boost business performance.
With offices in London, Birmingham, Manchester and Ipswich, we work with some of the largest private companies across all industries in the UK, as well as local authorities, NHS Trusts, educational institutions and other government entities.
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