DOE Consortium Offers Webcast on Tool that Calculates Savings and Costs of Switching to LED Street Lighting

On Tuesday, April 3, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) will host a 60-minute live webcast on the Retrofit Financial Analysis Tool developed by DOE’s Municipal Solid-State Street Lighting Consortium. Doug Elliott of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory will provide a guided walk-through of how this Excel-based tool can be used to evaluate the savings and costs associated with converting to light emitting diode (LED) street and roadway lighting. The webcast will begin promptly at 1 p.m. Eastern and will include a 30-minute presentation, followed by a 30-minute question-and-answer session with attendees. For more information, or to register, visit the webcast Web page.

Ranking among the biggest fixed costs for cities, most streetlights are on all night long, 365 days a year. The estimated 26.5 million streetlights in the U.S. consume as much electricity each year as 1.9 million households and generate greenhouse gas emissions equal to that produced by 2.6 million cars. Switching to solid-state lighting has considerable potential to help cities save energy and money.

The webcast will show how city and other government agencies, utilities, finance and budget offices, and energy efficiency organizations can use the Retrofit Financial Analysis Tool to compute annualized energy-cost savings, maintenance savings, greenhouse gas reductions, net present value, and simple payback. This information can be especially helpful when putting together construction and conservation grant applications, as well as preparing budgets and comparing incumbent costs to new costs.

The new tool is accompanied by a how-to instructional video. Users of the tool input a wide range of data for their particular application, including the incumbent technology, prevailing electricity and labor rates, installation cost, loan interest rate, and rebates. The software then generates a detailed analysis that’s useful not only for planning and budgeting purposes, but also in applying for financing. In a market where the cost of LED lighting has been steadily dropping, such information can help cities accurately evaluate costs in today’s dollars.

DOE created the Municipal Solid-State Street Lighting Consortium in 2010 to leverage the efforts of the many cities that are investigating LED street lighting products. Municipal street lighting upgrades are often spurred by block grants and energy mandates, and the consortium provides a convenient forum for cities to find information in just one stop. Another key resource it offers is the Model Specification for LED Roadway Luminaires.

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