Connected LEDs are driving China’s decarbonization goals forward


    May 23rd, 2022

    China’s “dual carbon” strategy uses lighting as a means to achieve massive decarbonization quickly


    China’s “dual carbon” strategy seeks to peak the country’s greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and become carbon neutral by 2060. These twin goals are expected to create trillions of dollars of investment opportunities, with significant gains for emissions-reduction technologies and low-carbon industries.


    Upgrading municipal lighting to LEDs represents one of the cheapest and fastest approaches that China is using to achieve its climate goals. As a secondary benefit, high-quality LED retrofits can also beautify a city, making the urban environment not only greener but also more comfortable and attractive to the people who live, work, and visit there.


    John Wang, market group leader for Greater China at Signify, formerly Philips Lighting, underscores the importance of lighting for achieving decarbonization ambitions. 

    The role of lighting in the city of the future is evolving with the sustainability movements”


    Wang says. “The pressure on reducing energy, maintenance costs, and operating costs will continue to increase so that climate change and budget objectives can be met.” 


    Planners in Shanghai, China’s most populous city, have spent the last few years working with lighting leader Signify to give the municipality’s financial and tourist districts a dramatic facelift.


    The collaboration is the largest single architectural lighting project out of the tens of thousands in Signify’s history, and is expected to save the city up to 70% of its annual lighting costs when compared to the conventional lighting system that the project is replacing.


    “The upgraded lighting system helps demonstrate Shanghai’s cultural heritage in a more vivid approach, creating impressive night scenes in an energy-efficient way,” Wang says.

    Mitigating the energy crisis with smart lighting
    Shanghai’s new lighting system is monitored and managed using Interact connected lighting management software from Signify. The data collected from the system “can give municipalities control and real-time information on the performance of individual light points," Wang adds. 

    In the future, this information could be input into smart city dashboards to give planners a 360-degree view of their smart city assets as China transforms its cities to be more efficient and liveable.”

    Interact Scene management software remotely controls the more than 50,000 light points installed throughout the waterfront district. System managers can use the Interact browser-based dashboard to instantly change or schedule changes to color, intensity, and other lighting attributes in response to the time of day or to commemorate special occasions.


    The Interact system also detects and automatically reports on faults and collects performance information on each luminaire and the system as a whole, maximizing the overall efficiency of the district’s lighting management.


    Signify’s Shanghai project illuminates three bridges—the Yangpu, Nanpu, and Xupu, all crossing the Huangpu River—as well as 37 buildings in the Bund waterfront district and 40 buildings in the Pudong financial district. The bridges, Bund, and Pudong district are now awash with clear, bright, controllable color, bringing a unique identity to a prestigious city while meeting its ambitious energy-efficiency goals.


    China’s dual carbon goals echo similar multilateral climate programs elsewhere in the world—for example, the European Green Deal, which requires governments and businesses to work together to reinvent national and regional economies to serve urgent climate action.


    Ultimately, the speed of global climate action needs to double to avoid the worst effects of climate change. China, which is responsible for nearly a third of global annual carbon emissions, must turn the tables fast.


    “While China has seen energy play a key role in the unparalleled socioeconomic leap forward it achieved in the last few decades, China is again taking strong action on energy with its dual carbon goals,” says Harry Verhaar, head of Global Public & Government Affairs in the Strategy & Sustainability organization within Signify.


    “While we will support these ambitions through the many benefits of connected LED lighting,” Verhaar says, “more broadly China’s ambitions underpin that carbon neutrality is a race to the future and lightens up the prospect that we can jointly keep the world within liveable boundaries of global warming.”



    About the author:

    Jonathan Weinert

    Jonathan Weinert

    IoT and connected lighting, Signify

    For further information, please contact:

    Signify Global Media relations - Professional Lighting
    Nikita Mahajan

    Tel: + 44 (0)7459751618


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    About Signify


    Signify (Euronext: LIGHT) is the world leader in lighting for professionals, consumers and the Internet of Things. Our Philips products, Interact systems and data-enabled services, deliver business value and transform life in homes, buildings and public spaces. In 2023, we had sales of EUR 6.7 billion, approximately 32,000 employees and a presence in over 70 countries. We unlock the extraordinary potential of light for brighter lives and a better world. We have been in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index since our IPO for seven consecutive years and have achieved the EcoVadis Platinum rating for four consecutive years, placing Signify in the top one percent of companies assessed. News from Signify can be found in the Newsroom, on X, LinkedIn and Instagram. Information for investors is located on the Investor Relations page.

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