This article was published in the July/August 2011 issue of LEDs Magazine.
View the Table of Contents and download the PDF file of the complete July/August 2011 issue.
The Institute of Energy Economics, Japan (http://eneken.ieej.or.jp/en) recently published a report on the electricity-saving potential of LED lighting and concluded that if all lighting in Japan was switched to LEDs, the total potential savings would amount to 92.2 TWh/year. This figure is equivalent to 9% of Japan’s current total energy consumption. Fig. 1 (previous page) breaks down the savings by sector, and shows that the greatest potential exists in offices and commercial buildings.
|Total lamps (million)||Price per replacement LED lamp (¥)||Total initial cost (trillion ¥)||Payback period||Electricity savings (TWh/yr)|
|Incandescent lamps||340||2000-3000||0.8||1 yr 5 mo||27.3|
|Fluorescent lamps (straight tube)||690||10,000-25,000*||9.6||9 yr 11 mo||49.7|
|Fluorescent lamps (circular lamps)||350||7000-15,000||3.5||18 yr 6 mo||6.8|
|HID lamps||20||100,000*||1.8||10 yr 11 mo||8.4|
Table 1. Cost and payback periods for replacing different lamp types with LED lamps. (*Includes possible infrastructure and labor costs required to make the changes.)
The report says that the switch would cost ¥15.7 trillion (around $197 billion), due to the current high cost of LED lamps compared with ¥100 for incandescent bulbs and ¥1000-1500 for CFLs. However the cost of replacing all the 340 million incandescent lamps would be ¥800 billion (around $9.9 billion). Such a move would lead to very significant savings of 27.3 TWh/year, as well as by far the shortest payback period.
The report also says that the cost of achieving the electricity savings (see Japan’s Eco-point Program transforms market for LED lamps) would be ¥1.3/kWh for incandescent lamps, based on a 40,000-hour lifetime. The figure is ¥14-17/kWh for replacing other technologies, and ¥9.2/kWh on average. In comparison, the cost of photovoltaic power generation is ¥40-50/kWh.
The report notes that households are highly sensitive to initial cost, so eco-point and other discounting measures are likely to be effective in promoting the spread of LED lamps. Meanwhile, businesses may require energy-conversation tax incentives and other subsidies to reduce the burden of up-front investment.