The simplest and quickest approach to stabilize the environment on our planet is with smart public lighting.
Only humans can contribute to halting the climate change that is occurring as a result of us. The Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, in particular Goal 13, make it abundantly evident how crucial it is to lessen the harmful effects of human activity on the planet. Globally, numerous governments have already made commitments to attain carbon neutrality by 2050. Additionally, public illumination can unquestionably be very important in reaching these objectives.
Cities may gain a lot by using intelligent public lighting. However, cities can also:
- Reduce energy use and associated CO2 emissions.
- Reduce light pollution.
- Save wildlife.
Conserve energy, and lower emissions of CO2
A city’s electricity budget normally includes more than 40% for public lighting. Sadly, it ranks among the biggest sources of energy waste. Despite being intended to increase public safety, they frequently continue to burn all night long, even when nobody is present.
A ideal solution to balance safety and savings is provided by smart street lighting. Public lights dimming on schedule makes a big effect.
Case-in-point: City of Dortmund (Germany): Due to intelligent street lighting technology, Dortmund claimed energy savings of 1.069 MWh and CO2 prevention of 694 tons during the past six months. All it took to achieve this energy savings and corresponding CO2 mitigation was to upgrade 20.000 street lights. The savings and decrease in carbon footprint will be astounding when Dortmund updates all of its street lights with smart outdoor bulb controllers.
About the last six months, Dortmund avoided producing 694 tonne CO2 and over 1.069 MWh of energy thanks to smart street lighting.
Utilizing motion sensor-based or adaptable lighting based on traffic and weather conditions could also help reduce energy waste and CO2 emissions. Energy savings of up to 80% are possible when using motion sensors in street lights to change the brightness according to human presence. Along with improving the comfort and safety of drivers, motion sensor street lights help preserve the aesthetics of the neighborhood.
Reduce Lighting Pollution
Light pollution is defined by the International Dark-Sky Association as the inappropriate or excessive use of artificial light, which can have negative environmental effects on people, wildlife, and the climate. As parts of light pollution, they list glare, light trespass, skyglow, and clutter. Ecosystem disturbance, harm to human health and well-being, and a lack of access to the night sky are all consequences of light pollution.
According to a study titled The New World Atlas of Artificial Night Sky Brightness, which was published in the journal Science Advances, more than 80% of the world’s landmass and more than 99% of American and European cities suffer light pollution. It affects the entire world! Therefore, reducing light pollution is crucial.
“Light pollution affects more than 80% of the world’s population and 99% of cities in the US and Europe. Reduced light pollution is essential.”
When no one is around during off-peak hours, lowering the light levels can greatly minimize light pollution. Cities now have a simple way to control lighting settings thanks to smart street lighting. From a central location, cities can remotely program network-connected intelligent public lighting based on demands.
Protection of biodiversity
Nighttime artificial outdoor lighting has a negative effect on biodiversity. It can alter animal migration patterns, population density, sleep-wake cycles, and more. More specifically, night-flying moths, hatchling turtles, frogs, and amphibians can be attracted to and confused by artificial light. It has an impact on the migratory birds’ flying patterns. Animals may become dazzled by too much light, which contributes to an increase in road fatalities. It also affects the relationship between predators and prey, as predators have an edge in visibility and prey lacks cover from the dark.
Therefore, smart city lighting has the potential to significantly improve things. Low light levels may be advantageous for biodiversity. A further contribution is made by motion sensor street lighting, which only increases in brightness when a person is present. These intelligent smart public lighting options are easily accessible on the market and can preserve citizen comfort and safety while protecting biodiversity.