Philips, Climate Group report results of LED street-lighting trials

A report on LED street-lighting trials in 12 of world’s largest cities showed significant benefits for energy-efficient lighting, and will add strength to a campaign calling on governments to elevate LED market acceleration as a policy priority.

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A report on global LED street-lighting trials, unveiled at the Rio+20 summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, shows that the technology can provide significant energy savings as well as social and environmental benefits for citizens.

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Energy savings
Run by The Climate Group, the LightSavers project is an independent, two-and-a-half-year global pilot of LED lighting in 15 separate trials across 12 cities including New York, London, Kolkata (see video, below) and Sydney. The projects have been extensively covered by LEDs Magazine in a series of articles (see Related Stories, right).

The new report is entitled “Lighting the Clean Revolution: The Rise of LED Street Lighting and What it Means for Cities,” and was produced by The Climate Group in partnership with Philips. It was launched as part of the Clean Revolution campaign at the Rio+20 UN Global Compact Corporate Sustainability Forum. The report supports the campaign’s argument that major energy savings can be achieved “virtually overnight” at relatively little cost.

The report explores the global market status and potential for LED technology, and provides guidelines for policymakers and city lighting managers who want to scale-up and finance large LED retrofits.

As well as advantages such as energy efficiency and long lifetime, LED technology provides other important benefits for city dwellers. Surveys in Kolkata, London, Sydney and Toronto indicated that citizens prefer LED lighting, with 68% to 90% of respondents endorsing city-wide rollout of the technology. Amongst the benefits that were highlighted in these surveys were a greater sense of safety and improved visibility.

Gobind Saha, 61, the owner of a roadside stall in Rabindra Sarani, India, said that the white light produced by LED lighting has a significant effect on his business. “Previously, anything and everything would look yellow in colour resulting in a decreased purchasing interest among buyers. But now that a buyer can clearly differentiate between a green and blue, my sales figures have gone higher.”

Calls for action

The Climate Group, Philips and partners are calling on governments to catalyze the scale-up of LEDs in cities and invest now in order to capitalize on this and create a significant amount of high-value jobs across the world.

The LightSaver trial concludes that LEDs are now “mature enough for scale-up in most outdoor applications, bringing economic and social benefits to the masses.”

Mark Kenber, CEO of The Climate Group said: “This report clearly highlights that LEDs are ready to be scaled-up in towns and cities across the globe. LED technology is energy efficient, scalable and positively impacts on the public; it is the Clean Revolution in action. We are now calling on Governments to remove policy obstacles and enable a rapid transition to low-carbon lighting.”

“A full switch to the latest energy-efficient LED lighting solutions provides significant energy savings, a reduction in CO2 emissions, and will transform urban environments,” said Harry Verhaar, Head of Global Public & Government Affairs at Philips Lighting. “We believe that by driving this lighting market transition, our LED lighting solutions will create livable cities for the benefit of residents and visitors.”

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