Environmental concerns regarding light pollution has led many cities, counties and homeowner associations to enact Dark Sky regulations to limit the amount of light going into the night sky. With the advent of Title 24 in California, energy efficient, motion controlled fluorescent and high-efficacy LED lighting have become mandatory for exterior lighting fixtures. However, being energy conscious and a good neighbor doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style. Here are some ways to responsibly (and stylishly) light up the night sky.
The International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) is a non-profit organization that works to cut energy waste and stop light pollution. For landscape and security lighting, they advocate the use of fully shielded lighting equipment to avoid glare. Troy Lighting’s Environmental Series of outdoor lighting fixtures combine exquisite handcrafted designs with Dark Sky compliant options, fluorescent options that comply with ENERGY STAR requirements and LED options that meet Title 24 standards. The light bulbs in this series are hidden behind richly colored art, opal, frosted and seeded and hand-tinted glass to avoid glare while also retaining the beauty of the lanterns.
For entry lighting, the IDA advocates full cut-off luminaires. The IDA also advocates turning off lights when unneeded. For example, landscape and facade lighting can usually be turned off after midnight or earlier. Troy Lighting’s Dark Sky complaint lanterns are available with incandescent or fluorescent lamp options, and full cut-off or semi cut-off light control systems.
In addition, Troy Lighting’s ENERGY STAR lanterns are supplied with an integral photocell that automatically illuminates the lanterns at dusk and turns them off at dawn. According to ENERGYSTAR.gov, when compared to incandescent light bulbs, ENERGY STAR qualified compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) use about one-quarter of the energy to produce the same amount of light, last about 10 times longer and save about $30 or more in electricity costs over the lifetime of the bulb. Because ENERGY STAR certified bulbs have to meet strict energy efficiency and performance requirements, they can be excellent choices for conserving energy. LEDs have also become the light source of choice for many outdoor lighting designers because they provide high-quality output with almost 60,000 hours of bulb life – translating to 10-15 years of use. They also generate little to no heat, which makes them extremely safe to use and require virtually no maintenance.
How do you practice responsible lighting? Let us know @Styleture