The Heat Replacement Effect

With all the fuss about how energy inefficient incandescent lamps are little thought has been applied to the result of the “wasted” energy that is effectively heat. In the North of Europe and Scandanavia we have to burn fuel to heat our houses for the majority of the year. So if we remove another heat source, ‘Ineffficient Inandescent Lamps” for example the heat generated by these will need to be replaced by energy inputs to the heating system if the rooms are to remain the same temperature.

As one of the inconvenient arguments against the ban this has been well and truly ignored by the EuP. The Market Transformation Programme in the UK did do some work on this and produced some extremely interesting results. The most significant result is that once Heat Replacement is taken into account the actual energy saving from changing an incandescent lamp to the “equivalent” compact fluorescent lamp is only 17% of the difference in wattage between the two lamps.

This inconvenient truth is then mitigated by the fact that according to the study the predominantly gas fired heating systems emit less CO2 than the equivalent energy delivered as electricity, however there is still a significant difference between the 80%venergy saving we are promised and the reality.

Kevan Shaw