LED Technology 

LEDS and the Environment 

Climate change is commonly accepted to be the greatest threat to our environment. It will result in us all experiencing more extreme weather – with wetter winters and drier summers. This has been caused by the levels of greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide (CO2), which have been released into our atmosphere. In the UK, business produces almost half of our carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. Even one small office can emit three to five tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. 
 
It is a known fact that industry can realise significant money savings by simply upgrading old lighting systems with new more energy efficient lighting; but of greater importance is the reduction in greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere as a result. By drastically reducing the electricity demanded from the power utilities by local authorities and business and industry, a substantial impact can be had on the reduction of CO2 emissions released, and on industry’s carbon footprint as a whole. 
 
Add the option for the responsible reuse of the existing lighting system fixture, and project costs can be further reduced while putting even less of an effect on the environment. The environment wins and your project wins considering UKLED offers the perfect balance of buying cost, performance and low operating/consumable costs over the long term for a favourably short return on investment time. 
 
One kilowatt-hour of electricity will cause 1.34 pounds (610 g) of CO2 emission. A GU10 Halogen downlighter rated at 50W on for an average of 8 hours a day will, over a year, cause 195 pounds (89kg) of CO2. The 3-watt LED equivalent will only cause 11 pounds (5 kg) of CO2 over the same time span, a reduction of around 94%! A building’s carbon footprint from lighting can be reduced, typically, by between 64% and 95% by exchanging all legacy lamps and tubes for new LED lamps and tubes. 
 

How LEDs play a key role in protecting the environment 

Reduction in CO2 Emissions 
Climate change is one of the greatest threats to our environment. It means we are likely to suffer from floods, droughts, storms and heat waves. Glaciers are shrinking, seas are rising and animals are migrating. We need to protect the planet for our children and our children’s children. 
 
Global warming is partly the result of huge rises in the levels of greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide, methane and ozone, produced to support human activities. Government targets aim to reduce carbon emissions by 50% by 2025. 
CO2 is produced when generating the electricity that provides the power that drives our modern society. So any reduction in demand for electricity results in a consequent reduction of those carbon emissions that cause so much damage. If, every time we switch on the lights, we can make big energy efficiencies, then that will make a huge difference to the UK, the international community and the world itself. Modern LED bulbs use between 80% and 90% less energy than standard light bulbs and so reduce that carbon footprint. 
 
Since the biggest users of light are business, industry and public bodies, they are the ones who can make the greatest difference. Corporate responsibility requires companies to recognise their impact on society and the environment, maximising positive impact and minimising any negative effects. Taking the initiative, operating ethically and transparently while taking sustainability into account is not only good business practice but results in customer trust and ultimately higher profitability. 
 

Facts and figures 

Bulb 
Watts 
Daily use 
CO2 Emission (Kg) 
GU10 Halogen 
50 
8 hours 
89 
LES 
8 hours 
Saving 94% of CO2 
A building’s carbon footprint from lighting can be reduced by between 64% and 94% by exchanging existing lamps and tubes for new LED lamps and tubes. 

Recycling 

The glass, aluminium, copper, circuit boards, and plastics in LEDs are over 95% recyclable and re-usable as they do not contain mercury or any other harmful components. The LED bulbs are crushed and separated into constituent components with the glass and aluminium being re-used in other products. As glass does not degrade during recycling, it can be recycled many times over. 
 
LED light bulbs have even been recycled by artists and sculptors to create stunning visual images. 
 

Re-lamping 

Installation of new lights requires no replacement of existing fittings and electrical wiring, therefore minimising waste and reducing the carbon footprint.