Turn on. Tune in. Drop off the Grid!
Today’s blog post is courtesy of Loren Dinneen from the Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce.
As more and more municipalities around the country look for opportunities to cut costs, one Illinois city is leveraging innovation to reduce costs and become more sustainable.
Downers Grove, IL., a suburb west of Chicago, became the first U.S. community to turn on hybrid lighting in a residential subdivision in March 2010. Hybrid street lighting is an “off-the-grid” system that uses solar panels, wind turbines and a LED luminaire. Today, not only is the 25-light system saving about $100,000 in electric and maintenance costs over its life cycle, but it’s also contributing to reduced carbon emissions and enhanced neighborhood safety.
The new hybrid streetlights are designed to last for 100,000 hours, as opposed to those used in traditional systems that need replacing after just 10,000 hours. Over a period of 30 years, the hybrid streetlights will save more than 500,000 kilowatts of electricity and reduce CO2 emissions by almost 350 tons.
You can read more about this great new technology and the public process Downers Grove facilitated in this article from the Sustainable Cities Network:
Just one more way municipalities are turning on (innovation), tuning in (to what their constituents demand) and dropping off the grid (sustainability).
Loren Dinneen, LEED GA
Loren Dinneen is the Director of Special Projects at the Lincoln Park Chamber of Commerce, managing local Special Services Areas and working with the community to revitalize and strengthen its local business districts.