Unlike artificial electric lighting, natural interior daylight requires no energy.
    Kids do better in the school where well-designed natural interior daylight is used for lighting the classroom. (Image: Henning Larsen Architects)

Right To Daylight is a campaign to enjoy nicer lighting in our buildings and homes and reduce our carbon emissions. 

Our Initiative encourages homeowners, architects, and building owners to use daylight as a primary light source.

Why is Daylight is a Human Right? 

Daylight has been tied to humanity since the dawn of our existence. Daylight is what grows the plants that help sustain our food sources and create oxygen. Daylight is the light source that has shaped human evolution from the beginning.

It’s only in the last 100 years that humans began using electric lights. More than just the visual, we feel daylight, it sets our circadian rhythms, connecting us to sky conditions and letting us intuitively know the time of day and year. It helps us know when we should be awake, and (in its absence) when we should be asleep.

Our eyes have evolved under daylight, so it is truly the perfect light source for seeing the world around us.  Colors appear true under daylight and details are more noticeable. Daylight has a positive effect on our emotions. Lack of daylight exposure can lead to depression.

Daylight is life, and if humans are deprived of it, negative consequences will occur. To “never see the light of day again” is punishment – it represents hopelessness. Daylight represents hope. It’s a metaphor translates across any language or cultural barriers.


Natural interior daylight offers a multitude of benefits beyond energy savings. It is the highest quality light source available for interior environments and provides excellent color rendering and color balance.

In commercial buildings, natural interior daylight is one of the fastest greenhouse gas reducing paybacks you can buy, because it shrinks both energy bills and re-lamping maintenance costs. The fact is, introducing daylight into buildings provides energy savings, excellent lighting quality and more beautiful interior spaces.

  1. Does natural interior daylighting pay for itself?

    The biggest payback of natural daylight is the value of a high-quality interior environment. When people feel better they perform better.

    Lighting accounts for roughly one-third of the electricity used by commercial or educational facilities in the United States. Whereas natural interior daylight requires no energy beyond sunlight. And Natural interior daylight is about 10-times more efficient than rooftop PV cells for lighting a room. 

  2. Should natural interior daylight be used in schools?

    There is plenty of evidence that natural interior daylight actually improves student grades in schools. Especially in learning environments, daylight provides a natural and stimulating space for teachers and students.

    While studies show that poor lighting adversely affects learning, daylighting has been proven to increase student performance in math and reading scores, as well as improving attendance. 

    Here’s a two-minute video of what teachers have said.

  3. How do workers preform under natural interior daylight?

    Studies show that office workers have few sick days. And factories that employ natural interior daylight experience few product defects. In fact, the human performance gains outweigh the energy savings, where human performance can be measured in financial terms.

    Gains from daylight harvesting are significant to raise morale, increase productivity for numerous industries, and even increase retail sales. 

    Here’s a two-minute video of what warehouse workers have said.

  4. Is natural daylight healthier than electric lights?

    Sunlight helps govern our 24-hour internal circadian clock, which regulates sleep patterns, core body temperature, brain wave activity, hormone production, cell regeneration, and other biological activities.

    Studies have shown that natural light improves patient wellness and recovery as well as health care worker productivity and retention. It can even speed patient recovery and help with pain management.