The LED lighting program introduced by the City of Sydney won accolades for leadership and innovation at this year’s Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (NSW) annual awards.

Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the LED lighting program has already reduced associated emissions and energy use by over 40 per cent. She explained that the lighting program was responsible for replacing 6,450 conventional lights, which will help save nearly $800,000 a year in electricity bills and maintenance costs for the City.

According to the Lord Mayor, Sydney was the first city in Australia to initiate the program of installing new LED street lights and park lights across its entire city centre, joining major global cities such as Berlin, Barcelona, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

A joint venture of GE and UGL Limited (UGL), selected by tender, has successfully commissioned over half of the new LED lights as part of the $7 million, three-year project.

Following the City’s lead, the NSW Government is encouraging councils across Sydney to replace conventional street lights with LEDs.

Feedback about the LED lighting program has been extremely positive from Sydney residents with a public survey conducted by the City after an 18-month trial revealing that more than 90 per cent of people found the new lighting appealing while three-quarters said it improved visibility.

LED lamps emit a bright white light, and are longer lasting and significantly more energy efficient compared to incandescent light bulbs created in the 19th century.

Since the introduction of LED lights, the City of Sydney has welcomed the announcement by Ausgrid (formerly Energy Australia) to progressively replace local street lights with LED lamps.

Public lighting accounts for a third of the City of Sydney’s annual electricity use and 30 per cent of its greenhouse gas emissions. The new LEDs will reduce emissions by 2,861 tonnes each year, the equivalent of taking 940 cars off the road.

Australia’s first carbon-neutral government, the City of Sydney has set itself the ambitious target of reducing emissions by 70 per cent below 2006 levels by 2030.