Shedding new light on an old problem
On average, lighting accounts for almost 50% of all electricity consumed by public schools, 25% for retail facilities, 23% for hotels, 17% for commercial buildings, and 16% for healthcare facilities. Upgrading lighting systems can reduce energy costs by up to 50%.
Alco Building Solutions is a leading provider of turnkey lighting solutions for building owners in a variety of private and public sector market segments. Our highly credentialed lighting experts specialize in designing & implementing customized lighting systems that:
Improve occupant morale, productivity, and performance
Have a positive impact on the environment
Reduce overall utility and maintenance costs
Why choosing the right lighting technology matters
For millions of years, humans (and almost all other living organisms) woke up, lived, and learned outdoors, following the natural pattern of the sun. As a result, we developed biological clocks (circadian rhythms) calibrated to the different light phases during a 24-hour day. The physiological processes controlled by our circadian clocks include metabolism, hormone secretion, body temperature, cardiac function, and ageing.
Decades of research confirm that circadian rhythms in sync with the natural light cycle help us feel more energized during the day and sleep better at night. They also improve our immune system, lower stress, and reduce the risk for diseases such as mood disorders, diabetes, obesity, and cancer.
On the flip side, misaligned circadian rhythms result in a bevy of negative consequences such as chronic fatigue, poor concentration, and an increased risk for various diseases.
Here's the problem
These days the vast majority of people spend more than 90% of their time indoors, far from natural sunlight.
Artificial lighting has contributed to a gradual shift in human activities and behavior. Days are dimmer and nights are brighter than would be experienced in nature.
The problem with incandescent lighting is that it's wildly energy inefficient (more than 95% of the energy goes to heat, rather than light), they have a very short lifespan (typically just 750 hours) and, because of the heat they produce, they can be hazardous in certain environments. The problem with fluorescent lighting is that it contains toxic materials (mercury and phosphorus), they have a short lifespan (anywhere from 6,000 to 10,000 hours), their omnidirectional, they emit ultraviolet light, they need time to warm up, and they buzz. All of which can have very negative effects on occupant wellbeing.
As a result, research conducted by the American Society of Interior Design found that 68% of workers/employees complain about the lighting in their buildings. Having the right lighting is, accordingly, becoming more of an issue for employers.