Benefits of Daylighting

Commercial construction requires the largest quantity of resources in the building industry. Commercial construction accounts for:
  • 72% of electricity consumption
  • 39% of energy use
  • 38% of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Lighting is the largest consumer of a building’s energy use, requiring approx 887 billion kWh of electricity each year. This energy is used to both power lights and provide additional cooling to compensate for the added heat generated by lights. These statistics prove that lighting design and control are critical to reducing energy consumption.

There are two types of benefits to installing light shelves. The most obvious one is energy efficiency. If natural daylight is injected deep into a room, electric lighting can be either dimmed or turned off completely, thereby reducing electricity consumption and lowering utility bills. What may not seem so obvious is that if the electric lights are turned down or off they generate less heat, therefore reduce the demand on cooling systems, saving even more energy. Typically the heat gain of incident light is about equal to the heat gain created by electric lighting. One benefit BrightShelf has over traditional light shelves is that less incident sunlight is required for daylighting, thereby reducing heat gain and electricity demand for cooling such heat.

Other psychological benefits can dwarf the energy savings of a light shelf. It is estimated that the costs associated with building occupants are some 75-100 times greater than the costs of the same buildings' utilities. Studies have shown that introducing natural daylighting can:

  • Improve employee productivity
  • Improve employee morale
  • Reduce absenteeism
  • Improve product quality
  • Reduce errors
These psychological benefits are quite astounding and multiple studies have shown very positive results from daylighting. Here are some examples:
  • Education: source
    • Studies show that classrooms with high amounts of daylighting incorporated averaged 7% to18% higher test scores than rooms with the least daylighting.
    • Students with the most daylighting in their classrooms progressed 20% faster on math and 26% faster on reading tests compared to those with the least amount of daylighting.
  • Retail: source
    • It has been shown that introducing daylight will likely increase a company’s gross sales by 40%
  • Office: source ; source
    • Workers with the best view processed calls 12% faster.
    • Workers with best daylight had 10% - 25% better memory function
    • 90% of businesses believe interior design can enhance productivity, and although the impact of (daylighting) is hard to quantify, a consensus is growing that it works.
  • Healthcare: source
    • 8% - 18.8% of hospital patients' average length of stay was reduced in by the introduction of daylight.
    • 70% of patients prefer daylight vs. electric light.