Replacement of fluorescent lamps with light emitting diode (LED) in an educational institution: environmental, energetic and economic concern

ABSTRACT Fluorescent lamps (FLs) can cause serious environmental and human health problems. This is due to the presence of mercury in its constitution and that, when discarded improperly, they can cause soil, air and water contamination. Light emitting diode (LED) lamps, in addition to being more economic and with a life longer than fluorescent lamps’, they provide greater brightness and, when replaced, do not contaminate the environment. The objective of this study was to evaluate the substitution of FLs with LED at the Federal University of Uberlândia (UFU), in Uberlândia, Minas Gerais (Brazil), by analyzing their environmental impact and economic and financial viability. It was possible to conclude that LED lamps stand out in terms of maintainability, durability, energy efficiency, economy and lower environmental impacts, being up to twice as efficient as FLs and not generating toxic waste. In this scenario, the economic and financial viability for FL’s substitution in UFU was verified, since that if a sample of 1,000 FLs was considered, the projected economy was between 55.75 and 80.78% by the end of 13 years and the return of the amount spent at the end of the first year. However, what stood out most in this experiment was the importance of the replacement from the environmental point of view, since it primarily contemplates sustainability actions in an educational institution.