Urban Lighting Workshop: Benefits of Sustainable Urban Lighting

What is the benefit of sustainable urban lighting to a city? To answer this, CityNet, Seoul Metropolitan Government, and Lighting Urban Community International (LUCI) held a workshop that presented the opportunities and benefits of sustainable urban lighting to municipal decision-makers on 29-30 June in Seoul supported by Philips Lighting.

Urban lighting is a crucial element of a city’s but many cities are still using old and inefficient technologies that cause municipal budget to increase due to the high energy requirements. Outdated lighting technology is costly due to its high consumption of electricity, which can be a burden and can account for up to 10 % of the overall municipal budget.

Streetlights represent one of the most cost-effective opportunities for energy savings and for reducing municipalities’ energy costs and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The use of energy-efficient lighting technologies – such as LEDs, intelligent lighting or off-grid solar streetlights for example – has great potential to save costs due to reduction in electricity consumption.

One of the Asian cities with comprehensive urban lighting policy, strategy and actions plans to ensure sustainable urban lighting is Seoul. In 2017 Seoul City upgraded its lighting plan to include innovative energy-saving street lights with advanced IT and LED technology. They represented their case to the workshop participants and engaged in interactive discussions. Other cities which have successfully implemented LED street lighting like Danang, Vietnam, and Semarang, Indonesia, had a chance to share their success story and the financing scheme with all other participating cities. The World Bank also presented the tools for urban lighting energy savings and cost reduction through the Sustainable Urban Energy and Emission Planning (SUEEP) projects.

The main goals of this workshop include to identify new potential partnerships and facilitate city-to-city cooperation, therefore, participating cities shared their SWOT analysis which was discussed during an interactive Road-Mapping Session on the last day.

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