The buzz about LED lighting continues to appear on government agendas, promising massive savings in electricity and a consequent reduction in CO2 emissions: a pledge made by 195 countries at the Paris COP 21 conference, late 2015. The fact that lighting alone is estimated to accounts for 6% of global CO2 emissions and that LEDs use up to 60% less energy than standard HPS lamps, has cities across the world committing to the switch. Some estimates put the potential savings at $180 billion annually should the world’s urban areas all replace their traditional streetlights with LEDs. A whopping 670 million tons of CO2 would be prevented from being released into the atmosphere – the equivalent of 233 million cars off the roads. These annual energy savings are enough to power 2.5 billion Indian households… Or 126 American households.
The charts below, based on announced plans to switch to LED, however, show that not all LEDs are created equal – nor are their potential benefits. Cities around the world are using LEDs with different luminosity and power-usage, as well as varying numbers of LEDs per lamp fixture, depending on whether they’ll be installed on highways or local streets. Additionally, our analysis takes into account the varied energy costs around the world, which cause the correlation disparities seen in the graphs.
*Some missing data has been extrapolated using comparable projects.