The lightbulb moment helping to save our environment

Published by  Communications

On 19th Nov 2020

How many people does it take to change 1,135 lightbulbs?

That was one of the questions facing UEA’s Estates team during lockdown, as they embarked on a project to replace all of the lighting inside the Sainsbury Centre with energy-saving alternatives.


The team used lockdown as an opportunity to replace the 700 museum lights and 400 halogen and fluorescent fittings with LED lights, which are around 90% more efficient, while still illuminating the building and its art installations just as effectively.

The LED lamps are fitted with motion sensors, meaning that they don’t need to use the energy to illuminate the building unnecessarily.

The work was completed during a 16-week period earlier this year while the Sainsbury Centre was closed to the public due to the pandemic and will save the building nearly 500,000Kwh of energy per year.

This equates to around 351 metric tons of greenhouse gas and carbon dioxide emissions a year, which is the equivalent of:

The reduction in greenhouse gas emissions if 76 cars were taken off the road for a year

  • The carbon sequestered by 459 acres of forest
  • 119 tons of waste being recycled instead of landfilled
  • The electricity used in 60 homes every year
  • The LEDs also carry significant energy cost savings, meaning the cost of the installation will have been paid off after 2 ½ years.

The Sainsbury Centre project follows a number of other buildings at UEA that have switched to the sustainable, cost-effective LED lighting within the last two years, including the Sportspark, the Library and the Registry.

UEA is this month marking one year until the COP26 conference in Glasgow with the new Climate of Change campaign,  which highlights the University's role in the UK’s climate emergency conversation. You can watch the launch video, and find out more about the campaign, on My UEA.

Latest News

  News
Good Neighbours logo
12 May 2021

Fine City Neighbours

New campaign calls on Norwich neighbours to join the fight against digital inequality

Read more >
  News
12 May 2021

How fasting diets could harm future generations

Fasting diets could impact the health of future generations according to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA).

Read more >
  News
11 May 2021

Honoured army veteran retrains to help bolster NHS

An army veteran, who received an MBE for her work with bereaved military families, says bolstering the NHS workforce is more important than ever as she retrains...

Read more >
  News
10 May 2021

UEA team reads minds to understand human tool use

Researchers at the University of East Anglia have made an astonishing discovery about how our brains control our hands.

Read more >
Are you searching for something?
  News
10 May 2021

UEA team reads minds to understand human tool use

Researchers at the University of East Anglia have made an astonishing discovery about how our brains control our hands.

Read more >
  News
Karen Heywood at the Antarctic
07 May 2021

Prof Karen Heywood honoured as Fellow of the Royal Society

UEA’s Prof Karen Heywood, Professor of Physical Oceanography in ENV, has been recognised for a lifetime of pioneering research into the physics of the ocean with...

Read more >
  News
07 May 2021

How we created the 'perfect storm' for pandemics

The way that many of us live has created the “perfect storm” for the evolution and transmission of infectious diseases like Covid-19 according to a researcher at...

Read more >
  News
05 May 2021

UEA collaborative project to improve global electoral integrity

A University of East Anglia (UEA) researcher will jointly lead a project to improve elections around the world, thanks to a grant of nearly $193,000CAN.

Read more >
  News
03 May 2021

Personalised medications possible with 3D printing

Customised medicines could one day be manufactured to patients’ individual needs, with University of East Anglia (UEA) researchers investigating technology to 3D...

Read more >
  News
Students studying a volcano
30 Apr 2021

Geoscientists call for action on tackling racial inequality 

An article published in the journal Nature Geoscience has highlighted the shocking under-representation of students from ethnic minority backgrounds in the...

Read more >
  News
30 Apr 2021

Thousands of men to trial prostate cancer home testing kit

Thousands of men worldwide are to receive a home test kit for prostate cancer – thanks to pioneering research from the University of East Anglia and the Norfolk...

Read more >