Christmas lights switched off – A real impact?
🎶 𝐀𝐥𝐥 𝐈 𝐰𝐚𝐧𝐭 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐂𝐡𝐫𝐢𝐬𝐭𝐦𝐚𝐬 𝐢𝐬… 𝐓𝐑𝐔𝐓𝐇! 🎄
And that’s what we got with Belgian television RTBF and Marie-Laure Mathot about the topical debate on whether cities should switch off Christmas lights to limit greenhouse gas emissions.
Interviewed on this topic, our COO Frédéric John stressed that “beyond the symbolic effort, the impact is minor compared to other sources of CO2 emissions a City can emit.”
For example, the Belgian city of Liège (200k residents) is expected to emit the equivalent of 6 tCO2 to power Christmas lights. Is it a lot? At an individual level, yes. But at the scale of a City, it is not.
To compare, 6 tCO2 is equivalent to a compact petrol car driven for 30k km. City of Liège operates 440 vehicles. Hence, reducing the fleet by <0,3% would offset all emissions from these festive lights.
Most of the time, actions to reduce emissions efficiently are hidden and sometimes require uncomfortable changes.
But it always starts by measuring the big picture with a CO2 inventory to make the right decisions.
Christmas lighting is a perfect example of organisations taking blindly inefficient actions to reduce emissions without metrics.
The article is available here.