LIGHTING THE ACADEMIC COMMONS: A Case Study of Electricity Efficiency of Incandescent, Compact Fluorescent and LED Lamps

A research paper on Technology for Renewable Energy
Jenkins Divo Macedo
M.S., Environmental Science & Policy (2014)
M.A., International Development & Social Change (IDSC)

13th December, 2012


This project explored the efficiency of the lighting systems at the Academic Commons (AC) at the Goddard Library at Clark University as part of an academic research paper for the Technology for Renewable Energy course taught by Dr. Charles Agosta, Chair of the Physics Department. The study builds on students’ responses to informal and open-ended surveys and electricity energy consumption data from the lighting systems. The data were analyzed using a 2010-MS Excel base calculator to provide descriptive statistics on demographic characteristics and statistical analysis of electricity used via lighting to determine energy cost, savings, CO2 emissions, and offsets by comparing the status quo (CFL lamps) against two hypothetical scenarios. The results indicate that, while the CFL lamps electricity consumption seems efficient in terms of CO2 emissions and cost compared to incandescent lamps, converting the lighting systems to LEDs would reduce CO2 emissions substantially and contribute to Clark University‚Äôs goal of zero emissions by 2020 thereby saving cost. The results suggest that Clark University would be saving about $3,687.00/year in lighting systems at the AC, while reducing 18,420 lbs. of CO2/year against the status quo of 147,355 lbs. of CO2/year.

Key Words: Energy efficiency, Lighting, Academic Commons, Clark University, greenhouse gases, electricity