NEWS IN THE WORLD OF POWER AND INTEGRATED BUILDING SYSTEMS
LED Streetlight Technology Taking Over Los Angeles
OVER THE LAST SEVEN YEARS, the LED
Streetlight Replacement Program in
Los Angeles has swapped more than 80
percent of the city’s 215,000 streetlight
fixtures with LED units. To date, energy
usage has lowered by 63 percent, saving
the city approximately $9 million per year
in energy costs. The city estimates that
carbon emissions have fallen by 47,583
metric tons per year.
The energy savings have had another
benefit—reduced load on the city’s
“This gives us the ability to use the
power for other purposes, and we have
started a new program of installing
[electric vehicle] charging stations
attached to streetlight poles,” said Ed
Ebrahimian, director of the City of Los
Angeles’ Bureau of Street Lighting.
The city also reports reduced crime
where LED lamps have been installed,
resulting from brighter light and the fact
that cameras are installed on some of the
posts. Solar panels have been installed
on its streetlight fixtures, and the utility
company buys back excess power.
The LED replacement program is “a
shining example of how green technology
can be both environmentally responsible
and cost-effective. We have transformed
the night landscape, made our city
safer and pedestrian-friendly at night,
and have exceeded our initial program
goals on both energy efficiency and
CO2 reductions,” Ebrahimian said.
The city is also looking into connecting
the poles to 911 calls, causing the lamps to
blink when there is an emergency.
In addition, the Bureau said Los
Angeles is the first city in the nation to
install SmartPole streetlights, which
are equipped with energy-efficient LED
lamps and 4G LTE wireless technology.
One hundred of these streetlights will
be installed this year, and 500 more will
be added over the next four years. This
involves replacing the entire standard
pole with a new pole that is slightly larger
and has accommodation for small cells in
the upper part of the pole, where the arm
of the fixture is located. A cabinet on the
lower part of the pole contains various
equipment, much of it installed by cell
The SmartPoles are designed to
deliver enhanced and reliable broadband
coverage to businesses, citizens and
visitors by integrating small-cell
technology with standard city streetlights,
thus improving the wireless network for
smartphones in dense urban areas.
Each pole has room for two to three
small cell compartments for a cell phone
carrier, which can lease space in the
pole for $1,000 per year. If a different
carrier wants access, another pole can
be installed nearby. Ebrahimian said the
carrier pays for the pole installation.
“By leasing the valuable digital real
estate on top of city light poles, this
project will self-fund, resulting in no cost
to taxpayers and generating hundreds of
thousands of dollars of revenue for the
city,” he said.
U.S. Employs Millions in Energy Efficiency
WHEN YOU THINK EFFICIENC Y, YOU THINK SAVING MONE Y.
As it turns out, efficiency is pretty good at making money, too.
According to a recent report released by energy-efficiency
advocates E2 and E4TheFuture, the efficiency economy may be
much larger than anyone thought.
Released in December, “Energy Efficiency Jobs in America”
credits efficiency with employing 1. 9 million jobs nationwide.
The number is based on U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data.
Compared to other clean-energy sectors, such as renewable
energy, electric vehicles and clean fuels, efficiency is the leading
employer. Efficiency jobs include high-efficiency lighting
manufacturing, Energy Star appliance manufacturing, and
heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) retrofitting.
Ranking each of these industries by number of jobs, HVAC
tops the list with more than 814,000 workers who spend part or
all of their time working on energy efficiency. Almost 328,000
Americans work in the energy-efficient lighting industry, while
another 292,000 work in advanced materials and insulation.
About 162,000 Americans help build Energy Star appliances.
The report also examines efficiency jobs by state. California
leads the nation, followed by Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts,
Ohio, Texas, New York, Georgia, Virginia and Pennsylvania.
A variety of factors contribute to a state’s success:
population, the size of its construction industry, weather,
policies, etc. According to the report, California and
Massachusetts have some of the best energy-efficiency policies
in the country.
Researchers involved in the study are optimistic about the
future of energy-efficiency jobs in the United States. Phillip
Jordan, vice president and principal researcher at BW Research
Partnership, the company that conducted the surveys for the
study, said “the sector is booming,” and that energy-efficiency
employers that were interviewed indicated “they plan to hire
more workers in the coming year.”
There are some uncertainties, especially as the government’s
role is concerned. Jordan said employers are closely watching
state and federal policies.