People, Perspective, Uncategorized

The Light Is Not Always So Green

Energy Efficiency Lighting Solutions at LightFair

Michael Immecke
Founder, Apollo AR GmbH
e: [email protected]

About Michael Immecke
Michael Immecke studied interior design & architecture over 20 years ago and has been focusing on light and building automation for over 12 years. He has been teaching at the German Institute for the Application of Light for 8 years covering a wide range of topics related lighting, sustainability and building automation design. He is a guest lecturer at universities and conferences in Germany, Sweden, Switzerland, Italy, India and USA, and has presented at the LightFair Conference in the past. He is involved in lighting projects primarily in central Europe. You can also find his work in Canada, Hong Kong, India and Saudi Arabia. His specialties and interests include Augmented Reality, lighting design, decorative lighting and lighting design software. More recently, he has been drawn to the ecological and environmental aspects of lighting industry and addressing the urgent need for an industry-wide focus on sustainability. He has been involved with product development for lighting manufacturers since 2020.

Michael’s column The Light is Not Always So Green will address sustainability-related topics, the urgency, challenges and solutions in the coming months.

Note from LightFair: LightFair supports sustainability initiatives and green action, especially those undertaken in the lighting industry. The views expressed in this column are the author’s. We encourage you to participate in this important conversation by sharing your views and perhaps even challenging the author’s views wherever you disagree by posting your comments and actionable ideas. We hope this column sparks meaningful conversations around sustainability in the lighting industry and a greener, cleaner future for everyone.

It´s time to act green.

Most industries evolve to address growing needs. Even large investment houses, notorious for their focus on profits, now prioritize sustainability goals.

The fashion industry is my inspiration for this month’s post.

Two brands have caught my attention. Both recently announced actions to become more sustainable.

Fast-fashion house Boodoo announced Kourtney Kardashian as their sustainability ambassador. An ambassador or influencer is usually selected for their competence and knowledge in that area. So far, Mrs. Kardashian is better known for living the high life in public view. To my knowledge, she has not demonstrated her passion for or authority around green action. Who would not see that this collaboration as nothing more than greenwashing?

Spotlight on Patagonia: a brand already well known as a sustainability frontrunner for many years. Applause to their founder who recently donated the entire company, worth $3 billion, and all profits of about $100 million per year, to a non-profit collective investing in nature, biodiversity and communities. This is no lip service. This is genuine and honest action.

Where are the good guys in the lighting industry?

Geopolitical challenges and economic forces have led us down a path that threatens our health, society and the future of our planet. The time to act is now. When it comes to the lighting industry, who is genuinely taking action to prioritize the environment and sustainability? What are some of the measures brands are taking to put the planet above profits and doing more than the bare minimum towards sustainability goals?

In my upcoming series, I will explore some of these tough questions and highlight examples where the lighting industry may be getting it right, but more importantly, we will look at areas where we must make a big shift now. 

We will analyze manufacturing processes, distribution chains, lighting design and waste management at the end of a luminaire’s life.

If you know of examples where companies are taking impactful green action, I would love to hear about them.

When it comes to sustainability efforts, the stakes are high for each and every one of us.

In my upcoming blog posts as part of this LightFair blog column, I would like to share my experiences with you.

I taught at the German Institute of the Application of Light for several years. I still give lectures at universities across Europe. I enjoy speaking at international conventions and have presented at LightFair several times. I’ve recently started to consult for a brand that aims to become “The Most Sustainable Lighting Company in Europe”. This surely is a high stake – a bold and ambitious goal. We agreed to set our ambitions instead of aiming low. Today, the company is one of many importing from China and reselling over different channels. Thus, they are quite interchangeable. However, our serious ambition is already a valuable differentiator setting this brand apart from the competition. We have made a commitment to taking the necessary steps to achieve the goal we’ve set. I will be transparent in sharing with you our hits and misses – large or small. Hopefully, my learnings will help others on the path to sustainability.

I do not want to be an armchair quarterback. Let´s discuss and exchange ideas and opinions and make a positive impact.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend