Healthy choice: energy-saving lamps. Part 1


In recent years, energy-saving lamps have become widespread and have caused a heated discussion about their impact on health.

Almost everyone has heard about energy-saving lamps. At the International Summit in Cancun, the UN Environment Program was unveiled, which noted the need to move from incandescent lamps to compact fluorescent energy-saving lamps.

According to experts, replacing all the incandescent light bulbs on the planet will save 47 billion dollars annually, reducing energy consumption by 409 terawatt-hours and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 246 million tons.

Bernard Jamet, head of the program for the transition to energy-saving technologies at UNEP, noted that, according to economists, the payback period for switching to energy-saving lamps around the world is about 1 year, and possible savings, for example, for Ukraine will be $210 million annually.

Benefits of energy saving lamps

The luminous efficiency of fluorescent lamps is 5 times greater than that of incandescent lamps. This means that a 20 watt lamp will give the same light as a 100 watt incandescent lamp and save 80% in electricity consumption. At the same time, their price is much higher than the cost of incandescent lamps, but even taking this into account, according to various estimates, 1 energy-saving lamp saves up to 100 UAH over its service life.

Due to their principle of operation and the absence of a filament, the life of compact fluorescent lamps is from 6 to 15 thousand hours compared to 1-2 thousand hours for incandescent lamps. But the service life of fluorescent lamps is greatly affected by operating conditions. Because they have a warm-up time of about 1-2 minutes, they do not like frequent on-off. Another disadvantage is that they cannot be smoothly adjusted with a dimmer. And this greatly limits their use, for example, in bedrooms.

If in a traditional incandescent lamp about 95% of the energy is spent on heating, then in fluorescent lamps they practically do not heat up. This makes it possible to use them in small fixtures and table lamps with plastic parts.

Another advantage is the choice of glow color: day, natural and warm. Warm with a color temperature of 2700 K is close to incandescent lamps and is most suitable for residential areas. Natural light (4000 K) is better for work and concentration, and daylight (6400 K) is better for large rooms.

In addition to the most common fluorescent lamps, another type of energy-saving lamps are LED lamps. Due to their absence of mercury and the problems associated with it, they are the most promising type of lighting. However, their widespread use is hindered only by their high price, exceeding even the cost of expensive fluorescent lamps.

Having appreciated all this, many countries have developed a plan for the transition to energy-saving lamps. Since September 1, 2010, the sale of incandescent lamps with a power of more than 100 watts has been prohibited in the EU countries. And from January 1, 2011, Russia and Mexico will join this ban. By 2014, Russia plans to completely abandon the production of incandescent lamps. These intentions have caused a lot of discussion about the safety and possible harm to energy-saving fluorescent lamps for health.

Harm and potential danger of energy-saving lamps

Due to the high level of ultraviolet radiation in people with hypersensitive skin, compact fluorescent lamps can be harmful, according to experts from the British Association of Dermatologists. Therefore, they advise people to stay no closer than 30 cm from such lamps, and patients predisposed to skin diseases to use lamps with a spiral closed in a glass bulb.

Another important detail is the use of highly toxic mercury in fluorescent lamps, although its content is very small (from 3 to 5 mg). A study conducted by the Fraunhofer Institute (Fraunhofer Wilhelm Klauditz Institute, Braunschweig, Germany) showed that when such a lamp is broken, the concentration of mercury vapor can reach 7 μg per 1 cubic meter, with allowable limits of 0.35 μg / m3.

Specialists of the World Health Organization also pay attention to this, expressing serious doubts about the safety of using fluorescent lamps in rooms with pregnant women and children.

In the event of a leak in the fluorescent lamp, open the windows immediately and remove people and pets from the premises. Next — carefully collect (not with a vacuum cleaner!) The broken parts of the lamp in a sealed bag, wash the floor with a solution of potassium permanganate and ventilate the room well.

Due to the mercury content, another problem is the disposal of fluorescent lamps, because you cannot throw them in the trash can. The removal of mercury from lamps (demercurization) is carried out by special companies with which utility companies enter into contracts. Therefore, you must contact your utility company. In Kyiv, only 1 company is engaged in demercurization — Demikon LLC (Akademika Krymsky St., 27 near the Akademgorodok metro station, tel. 423-05-71). Therefore, if you were denied a housing office, conscious citizens can contact them directly. The procedure is paid — 2.51 UAH for each light bulb.

Read more about choosing the right safe energy-saving lamps in our next article.

(To be continued)

Author: Selivanov Vladimir

Article protected by copyright and related rights. When using and reprinting the material, an active link to the healthy lifestyle portal is required!


Добавить комментарий

Ваш адрес email не будет опубликован. Обязательные поля помечены *