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National Outdoor Lighting Improvements Would Save $5.1 Billion Annually
New Industry and Advocate Agreement to Boost Streetlight Efficiency; Save Electricity and Money

WASHINGTON (November 3, 2009) -- A breakthrough agreement between electrical manufacturers and energy efficiency advocates, including the Natural Resources Defense Council, will create the first national standards for street lights, parking lot lights and other outdoor lighting. The standard will save electricity and money for consumers, taxpayers and local governments.

The new standards will phase out the least efficient outdoor lighting products by the end of 2012, transitioning to new lighting products that are better for the environment and less costly to run. For example, new outdoor lights will be required to have a sensor that will turn them off during daylight hours, putting an end to wasteful streetlight operation during the day. New parking lot lights must be capable of being dimmed, which can cut their energy use in half. The agreement also directs the Department of Energy to develop even better standards by 2013.

The new rule can save 25 to 42 billion kilowatt hours per year by 2030, which is the equivalent of powering 2.5 to 4.5 million homes for an entire year. The standard will cut carbon pollution by almost 8 million metric tons per year, and will save between $2.8 billion to $5.1 billion annually on energy costs, according to American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). 

Following is a statement by Lane Burt, Manager of Building Energy Policy at the Natural Resources Defense Council:

“This agreement marks a breakthrough in our approach to outdoor lighting that will save money, cut pollution and reduce our electricity use. Increasing lighting efficiency will help cut down on costs on lighting our parking lots, highways and even local roads -- everywhere people drive and park their cars. Now it’s time for Congress to finalize the legislation and for the Department of Energy to begin working to improve our outdoor lighting standards throughout the country.”

For more information on the agreement please see Lane Burt’s latest blog post
New Standards for Street Lights More Than Just a Bright Idea

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an international nonprofit environmental organization with more than 2 million members and online activists. Since 1970, our lawyers, scientists, and other environmental specialists have worked to protect the world's natural resources, public health, and the environment. NRDC has offices in New York City, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Bozeman, MT, and Beijing. Visit us at www.nrdc.org and follow us on Twitter @NRDC.

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