As the world is transitioning from linear consumption driven growth towards a more sustainable development pathway, lighting has become a sector increasingly known for its potential to save energy and reduce carbon emissions.
We know how to value - in monetary terms - the energy savings that, on a global level, amount to € 128 billion, and we're trying to put a number to its environmental potential (the carbon savings and the reduced risk of weather instabilities). However, the big question is, if and how we will truly value the ‘social’ benefits of the improved LED lighting quality and versatility.
Often technology, policy measures and financing are earmarked as the most important enablers for faster sustainable development. A fourth key enabler (that is not yet leveraged to its full potential) is the way we communicate. Imagine if everything was labeled ‘low-carbon’ or ‘green’, - wouldn’t that be off-putting?
The importance of a simple choice of words can be seen by looking at the following example. Imagine a city that has implemented a large-scale LED lighting program: which sounds more motivating and would make you (as citizen or neighboring city) act: ‘Low-carbon City’, or ‘Green City’, or perhaps rather ‘Livable City’ ?