LEDs could reduce lighting energy use nearly 50% by 2030

The Energy Information Administration estimates total U.S. site electricity consumption at more than 3,500 terawatt-hours (TWh), or 40 quadrillion Btu (quads) of energy in 2010. DOE's forecast analysis estimates that lighting technologies are responsible for 18% of this electricity use. In residential and commercial buildings, lighting is the second largest end-use of energy, representing approximately 16% of residential and 20% of commercial building electricity. A new report, called Energy Savings Potential of Solid-State Lighting in General Illumination Applications, finds that LED lighting could reduce energy consumption by nearly 20% in 2020 and nearly 50% in 2030. The report also highlights the energy savings potential of LED white-light sources compared to other options, such as incandescent, halogen, and fluorescent lighting. The graph summarizes forecasted annual electricity consumption of lighting technologies and the electricity savings resulting from increased LED use, broken down by building sector.

Source: Energy Savings Potential of Solid-State Lighting in General Illumination Applications, January 2012

DOE looks at critical materials

Rare earth metals and other materials are important to wind turbines, electric vehicles, photovoltaic thin films, and energy-efficient lighting. In recent years, demand for almost all such materials has grown more rapidly than demand for commodity metals such as steel. For example, as lighting efficiency standards are implemented globally, heavy rare earths such as yttrium used in lighting phosphors may be in short supply. According to a recent study, DOE's 2011 Critical Materials Strategy report, sourcing challenges for five rare earth metals including dysprosium, terbium, europium, neodymium, and yttrium may affect clean energy technology deployment in the years ahead, though the DOE and others have scaled up work to address these challenges. Progress includes new research funding, development of DOE's first critical materials research plan, and new coordination among federal agencies.

Source: 2011 Critical Materials Strategy,

Wind power expansion creates electricity, job growth

Wind power is blowing strong across the country, according to a new report just released by the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA). The U.S. Wind Industry 2011 Market Report states that the domestic wind industry installed 6,816 MW in 2011, 31% more than in 2010, for a total of 46,916 MW installed to date. In addition, more than 8,300 MW are now under construction. Energy production and job creation are up too: South Dakota and Iowa lead a record five states that received more than 10% of their electricity from wind in 2011, and seven states now have at least 4,000 wind jobs each.

Source: AWEA,

Top 10 states for wind jobs

1. Iowa 6,000 to 7,000
2. Texas 6,000 to 7,000
3. Illinois 6,000 to 7,000
4. Ohio 5,000 to 6,000
5. Colorado 4,000 to 5,000
6. California 4,000 to 5,000
7. Michigan 4,000 to 5,000
8. Pennsylvania 3,000 to 4,000
9. Florida 2,000 to 3,000
10. Oregon 2,000 to 3,000

Top 10 states for wind generation (by % of total portfolio)

1. South Dakota 22.3%
2. Iowa 18.8%
3. North Dakota 14.7%
4. Minnesota 12.7%
5. Wyoming 10.1%
6. Colorado 9.2%
7. Kansas 8.3%
8. Oregon 8.2%
9. Idaho 8.2%
10. Oklahoma 7.1%
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