Sharing conventions for energy efficient lighting?

Panel: 8. Dynamics of consumption

This is a peer-reviewed paper.

Author:
Charlotte Jensen, Aalborg University Copenhagen, Denmark

Abstract

Since 2009 a part of the European Commissions’ Eco-design directive has been levelled at domestic lighting, and with a strong focus on energy efficiency, only the most energy efficient light emitting diodes (LEDs) are to outlive the regulation within near future. However, the EU Commission struggles with the realization of a lower uptake than expected, particularly of LEDs. Studies show that this may be due to energy efficiency not being the only, or even primary, concern that people have when illuminating the home. However, the studies do not say much about how certain lighting patterns are maintained or may change. In this paper, aspects connected to the latter will be explored through a case study of a number of households in an ecological community in Roskilde municipality in Denmark. The study will be compared to another case study of lighting patterns in number of low energy, however more conventional households, situated in Stenløse municipality, also in Denmark. Although some aspects concerned with illuminating the home seems considered ‘common’ across the cases, the actual deployment, and reasons given for the deployment, differ between the two contexts. The deployment of energy efficient lighting technologies such as CFLs and LEDs is higher within the ecological community in Roskilde than in the detached low energy houses in Stenløse. Policy-wise, this is interesting as both contexts of households have the same access to public information about energy efficient light, and the residents in both contexts should presumably be aware of energy and environmental aspects as they are living in houses that are results of environmental considerations. Therefore this paper will focus on how certain practices involving light may be socially reproduced across time and space, but also questions why some patterns related to performing social practices seem to differ due to particular living arrangements and learning processes through sharing certain conventions.

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