The Australian Smart Lighting Summit 2014 held recently in Melbourne saw over 40 councils, energy providers, road authorities, contractors and designers from across Australia meet to discuss new strategies and technologies for energy- and cost-efficient public lighting retrofits.

Hosted annually by City of Melbourne, the national event was attended by over 200 lighting industry experts and sustainability consultants, who participated in a focussed program of presentations, panels and roundtable discussions to showcase the progress of street lighting projects and highlight some of the barriers being faced in achieving faster results.

Over 60 Australian councils including Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and Hobart are currently in the rollout phase or have completed bulk lighting changeovers, with over 148,000 lights upgraded so far.

Municipal Association of Victoria and Ironbark Sustainability have partnered to help Victorian councils replace over 232,000 streetlights to energy efficient alternatives. When completed, the retrofit projects are expected to deliver a cumulative saving of $431 million through reduced electricity and maintenance costs. This lighting retrofit initiative has the honour of being the second largest street lighting project in the world after New York.

George Angelis, Manager of Infrastructure and Traffic Operations at City of Sydney presented the city’s LED retrofit success, while Martin Valentine of Abu Dhabi Municipality gave an international perspective on public realm lighting strategy and smart lighting technology.

Outdoor lighting control technology was a major focus area at this year’s summit with a panel session of experts including Rob Evans of Organic Response shedding light on the maturity of the control technology and a need for a greater understanding of its importance within current lighting projects.

Lighting technology suppliers including Philips, Gerard Professional Solutions, OrangeTek, LEDified and Silver Spring Networks were amongst the sponsors showcasing the latest solutions at the boutique exhibition.

Charlene Corrin, Conference Producer at Expotrade Global, which organised the event, said that the summit is a very important platform for Australia’s lighting industry with local government representatives, contractors, consultants and manufacturers meeting to discuss regulations and strategies to achieving the target of replacing over 2.3 million lights across Australia.

The 3rd Annual Australian Smart Lighting Summit will be held next year at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre on 8-9 September 2015.