In August of 2005, President Bush signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005 into law. This Act tackles several energy issues and lighting is certainly affected. The purpose of the legislation in general is to reduce energy consumption and provide tax deductions for commercial buildings installing energy efficient systems from January 1, 2006 to December 31, 2007. NEMA further estimates that the provision will generate about $500 million in additional sales of lighting systems and products alone.
The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that lighting accounts for 25 percent of all electricity consumed in the United States. An average household spends 5 to 10 percent of its energy budget on lighting, and commercial buildings can spend up to 40 percent of an entire annual electricity bill. Upgrading a facilities lighting system can be an easy way to lower energy costs and reap the benefits of the tax deductions offered by the EPAct 2005, for more information, visit www.energybillinfo.com.
Lighting products to be affected are:
Exit signs - must meet ENERGY STAR© Version 2.0 efficiency levels
Torchieres - will be limited to using light sources that total no more than 190 watts
Ballasts - mercury-vapor ballasts cannot be manufactured or imported and will eventually be eliminated entirely
Ceiling fan light kits - the elimination of medium based bulbs in ceiling fans and ceiling fan kits, new bulbs must meet ENERGY STAR© Version 3.0
Medium-base compact Fluorescent lamps - must meet ENERGY STAR© performance requirements
Electromagnetic Ballasts - as of January 1, 2009, manufacture of electromagnetic ballasts must cease
Last year alone, ENERGY STAR© , helped Americans save enough energy to power 10 million homes and avoid greenhouse gas emissions from 12 million cars - all while saving $6 billion. No other electric systems have a greater impact on energy savings than lighting, and lighting provides the highest return for your investment. Upgrades can pay for themselves in 3 years or less. This allows us as professionals to create a demand for energy efficient lighting technology and to be sensitive to our customers changing lighting needs.