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    What is circular lighting? How to make a closed loop system

     

    October 14, 2021

     

    How circular lighting is a regenerative approach to production, with the long term in mind.

     

    Circularity focuses on maximising the reusability and longevity of materials and resources; and this includes lighting.

     

    Unlike a linear economic system, where products ultimately end their lifespan as waste due to initial design features, circularity puts the future in mind through the design of recyclable, reusable and serviceable goods, creating a closed regenerative loop system.

    We must look at the way we are using – or abusing – products, and that’s what we are doing with lighting.”

     

    Harry Verhaar

    Head of Global Public and Government Affairs at Signify

    “In order to move to a more sustainable society we must naturally tackle carbon emissions, but we need to also look at the way we are making products in what is very much a consumer based society,” said Harry Verhaar, Head of Global Public and Government Affairs at Signify, adding that “we must look at the way we are using – or abusing – products, and that’s what we are doing with lighting.”

    Reuse/recycle

     

    There are around 30 billion light points installed around the world, many of which are disposed of at the end of their lifespan.

     

    But this is not the case for those at Signify’s Bielsko Biala plant in Poland which became a zero-waste-to-landfill site last year after a successful campaign to set up a new waste collection system.

     

    Now, plastic, paper, glass and municipal waste is separated before collection ready to be reused or recycled. Previously landfilled waste is also now in the process of being collected for use once more.

    Serviceability

     

    Additionally, circular lighting is about having the ability to continue benefiting from the best available technology through the maintenance and upgrading of products. This allows for a level of customer care, performance guarantees, and overall business models that are largely service-based.

     

    The High Tech Campus Eindhoven, a technology park in the Netherlands, which is home to over 140 businesses, worked with Signify to redesign its lighting system to be more reflective of its sustainable business operations.

     

    “A circular lighting service was introduced throughout the campus’ parking garages, to switch all of the existing lighting to LED, and handing the maintenance responsibility over to Signify through a light as a service contract, meaning that Signify retains ownership over the physical lights, and that High Tech Campus Eindhoven pays for the lighting. Together, this led to a 70% saving on energy consumption and allowed the campus management team to focus on their core business.

     

    “As a Campus, we consider it natural that visitors should encounter the best and very latest technology,” said Harrie Arends, operations manager at High Tech Campus Eindhoven.

     

    “This technology ensures significant energy savings and produces lower carbon emissions. In addition, we will not have to do anything with our lighting system for the next ten years; Signify will handle all of that,” he added.

    3D Signify printed luminaires at British retailer M&S

    Design and production

     

    For ease of serviceability, products need a modular construction, and this means that circularity begins at the design and production stage.

    3D printing has been around for a while, but these luminaires are the first real retail lighting application we’ve seen that improves the sustainability of our stores and are extremely complementary to our sustainability strategy.”

     

    Oliver Knowles

    Research and Development Manager at M&S

    British retailer M&S recently announced it will be rolling out thousands of 3D Signify printed luminaires across its stores, which is expected to drastically reduce the carbon footprint of the lighting system and will be almost entirely reused or recycled at the end of the luminaires’ lifespan.

     

    This technique generally has half the carbon footprint of a traditional luminaire and the polycarbonates used are 10 times more recyclable.

     

    “3D printing has been around for a while, but these luminaires are the first real retail lighting application we’ve seen that improves the sustainability of our stores and are extremely complementary to our sustainability strategy,” said Oliver Knowles, Research and Development Manager at M&S, adding that “the potential for these fittings is enormous, both from an energy and cost-efficiency perspective.”

     

    Ultimately circular lighting advances the move towards a more energy efficient society and may help us push back the date of Earth Overshoot Day – when resource consumption exceeds capacity around the world – from July 29 to the end of the calendar year where it belongs..

    About the author:

    Kira Guehring

    Harry Verhaar

    Head of Global Public and Government Affairs at Signify

     

    For further information, please contact:

    Signify Corporate Communications
    Elco van Groningen
    Tel: +31 6 10 86 55 19
    Email: elco.van.groningen@signify.com

    About Signify

     

    Signify (Euronext: LIGHT) is the world leader in lighting for professionals and consumers and lighting for the Internet of Things. Our Philips products, Interact connected lighting systems and data-enabled services, deliver business value and transform life in homes, buildings and public spaces. With 2020 sales of EUR 6.5 billion, we have approximately 39,000 employees and are present in over 70 countries. We unlock the extraordinary potential of light for brighter lives and a better world. We achieved carbon neutrality in 2020, have been in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index since our IPO for four consecutive years and were named Industry Leader in 2017, 2018 and 2019. News from Signify is located at the Newsroom, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. Information for investors can be found on the Investor Relations page.

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