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Energy efficient lighting industry professionals are anticipating strong business in 2011 as a result of continued investment in energy efficiency projects, according to a survey by Precision-Paragon [P2], a lighting provider. A strong majority (73%) of the energy efficient lighting professionals who responded to the survey said they expect to see an increase in revenue from retrofit projects in 2011.
They were similarly positive about the industry as a whole, with nearly 75% of the respondents saying they expect the overall market for energy efficient relighting projects to experience growth in 2011. The survey results mirror the belief of Precision-Paragon [P2], a division of Hubbell Lighting, Inc., that business owners increasingly understand that installing energy efficient lighting can cut their energy costs and corresponding greenhouse gas emissions.
“Companies can see significant savings through lighting retrofit projects, so we expect more of these projects will go forward in the coming year,” said Joe Martin, [P2] vice president and general manager.
The survey was distributed to more than 1,900 energy efficient lighting professionals, including energy service contractors, energy focused electrical distributors, and lighting retrofit contractors. Most of the respondents said they expect the first quarter of 2011 to be their slowest period, with their busiest time coming in the second or third quarter.
One notable sign of optimism among the survey takers: many are planning for increased business as part of their infrastructure strategy. Despite the uncertain economic times, 46% of respondents said they are “building for growth” in 2011. Just 2% said they planned to cut back.
Survey takers also indicated they believe that linear fluorescent lighting remains the right technology for the vast majority of energy efficient lighting projects, with 80% indicating that it was the predominant technology they expected to install in the coming year. LED technology was the second place choice by a wide margin, which fell in line with [P2]’s expectations.
“LED is a great technology,” explained Martin, “and we’ve engineered fixtures for the niches where it makes the most sense. But it shouldn’t be seen as a replacement for linear fluorescent lighting in most applications.”
Along with cost savings from energy efficient lighting upgrades, federal support for energy efficiency projects could help to explain the positive outlook among lighting industry professionals. Economic stimulus money has been targeted toward green job creation and the administration’s budget proposal for 2011 would increase support for energy efficient commercial buildings.
“As the economy emerges from recession, we expect even more companies will want to invest in energy efficient lighting and substantially lower their electricity costs,” Martin said.