VENTURES AFRICA – The world’s leading lighting company, Philips has hinted on the need for Africa to switch to light-emitting diodes (LEDs) from its current expensive diesel and fuel based lighting system, the continent could save up to N1.63 trillion ($10 billion).
Speaking at the presentation of the results of a Royal Philips in Africa-sponsored research, the company said when LED solution is combined with the latest developments in battery and solar technologies, it would provide sustainable power for more than 600 million Africans who currently live without electricity.
The company’s senior communications manager, Nick Kelso added that the company has reached a tipping point in the development of high quality LEDs that are well suited for general lightings that cut across various applications.
While describing the applications of LED for Africans, Eric Heutinck, General Manager, Philips Lighting, MAGHREB and West Africa said ‘‘Quality LEDs offer part solutions to some of the key issues we face today, including energy crisis, climate change, resource scarcity, safety in our cities and an enhanced sense of health and well being.’’
“Today’s LED lighting can deliver very high energy efficiency, long life, design flexibility, controllability and colour – all of which are essential to creating solutions which will improve lighting,” he added.
According to the company’s earlier prediction about the future of LEDs, by 2020, about 75 per cent of the global lighting market value will be LED based.
They arrived at this figure by analyzing current sales data and thoughts about future trends. According to the figures, lighting currently consumes an average of 19 percent of global electricity production with a great majority based on older less efficient technologies developed in the 1970s.
The high demand for electricity has led to the development of low consuming lighting technologies such as LEDs.
Lighting experts say switching fully to the latest lighting technology would provide a significant energy saving of up to 80 per cent in many applications, including an average of 40 per cent for all lighting.
Unlike the wide assumptions, switching to LEDs is easier since more than three quarters of all lighting is in commercial and industrial world rather than domestic.
Therefore, the level of awareness is being increased and worldwide steps are being taken by NGOs that are involved in energy saving in addition to those being taken by governments, lighting companies like Philips and other stakeholders.