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NEMA's eiXtra: June 29, 2009
eiXtra: published by NEMA Hot Topics
On the Hill/Around the Nation
International News
Monday, June 29, 2009
feature story
Peace Bridge Shines with LED Lighting Transformation by Philips

Landmark crossing between United States and Canada achieves dramatic new look with energy-saving technology

Peace Bridge - Img No. 1.
Peace Bridge - Img No. 2.
Proving that city landmarks and structures needn’t go dark to be energy conscious, the Peace Bridge has undergone a 21st century transformation made possible by advanced light-emitting diode (LED) technology.

The $1.2 million project was funded by the federal government’s Transportation Enhancement Program, with support from the Buffalo and Fort Erie Public Bridge Authority.

Formerly lit by metal halide floodlights that had fallen into disrepair, the 3,580-foot bridge is now illuminated by nearly 700 tri-color LED lighting fixtures – each capable of digital control to produce millions of colors and dynamic sequences. Unlike conventional light sources, they don’t require maintenance-intensive gels, filters, or color scrollers to customize the bridge’s appearance on the fly for special events and holidays. More importantly, the entire LED installation will consume just one third the energy of the previous system – reinvigorating the signature bridge in a smart and sustainable way.

“At the turn of the last century, Buffalo was known as the ‘City of Light,’ recognizing its status as one of the first cities to be illuminated by hydro-electric power. The Peace Bridge Authority is pleased that over 100 years later, we can deliver a project that builds on this heritage, utilizing state of the art technology and energy efficiency,” said Ken Schoetz, vice chairman of the Peace Bridge Authority.

“The interplay of light with a signature landmark serves much more than decorative purpose. It should reinforce the form, content, and volume of the object as well as reveal the essential character and nature of the architecture,” said Paul Boken, senior lighting designer at Mulvey & Banani International. “For the Peace Bridge, LED technology allowed us to transform a static monument into a vibrant, ever-changing form—all while meeting budget requirements and the need for sustainability, security, and versatility.”    

“We’re thrilled to bring the extraordinary impact of LED lighting to this important landmark, demonstrating that energy-saving lighting upgrades can be both practical and visually spectacular at the same time,” said Jeff Cassis, CEO of Philips Color Kinetics. “This installation perfectly exemplifies the large-scale exterior applications that LED technology now allows—enabling the use of vibrant color where it was previously impractical, while simultaneously alleviating energy and maintenance concerns.”

In addition to their aesthetic versatility, LED systems are highly durable and therefore well suited for difficult-to-access and vibration-prone environments, such as bridges. For the Peace Bridge installation, a combination of ColorBlast® Powercore and ColorReach Powercore was specified—the former illuminating the deck of the bridge and structure below, and the latter applied to illuminate the bridge’s arches. 

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On the Hill/Around the Nation

Clean Economy For 48 Cents/Day
Since Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Edward Markey (D-MA) introduced the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES), conservatives have grown increasingly hysterical in their opposition to clean energy and green jobs. Rep. "Smokey" Joe Barton (R-TX) -- a prominent global warming denier and top recipient of dirty coal funding -- renamed the bill. "They like to call it ACES but I call it C.R.A.P. -- continue ruining America's prosperity," he snickered. Rep. Frank Lucas (R-OK) declared that a cap-and-trade system like the one proposed by Waxman and Markey "promises to cap our incomes, our livelihoods, and our standard of living" and will therefore "hurt American agriculture." Though Republicans have long falsely claimed that a cap-and-trade program will cost every American family $3,000, a new analysis by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office found "that the net annual economywide cost of the cap-and-trade program in 2020 would be $22 billion -- or about $175 per household." This amounts to 48 cents per day -- a little more than the cost of a postage stamp. Sen. John Kerry (D-MA) and former Secretary of State Richard Armitage have argued recently that climate change is also "the biggest long term threat" to America's national security. Unwilling to wait any longer for much-needed action, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) announced Monday that she plans to bring ACES for a House vote on Friday. Center for American Progress (CAP) CEO John Podesta acknowledged that ACES is "imperfect in its means" but ultimately "deserves the support of progressives." Though the bill may not be everything environmentalists and progressives want, Podesta, alluding to the Rolling Stones's Mick Jagger, said, "They must try this time to pass it through the House so that we can ultimately get what we need: a clean energy law that creates jobs, reduces oil use, and cuts global warming pollution."

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International News

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Renewable Energy Finance Scheme from Dimplex
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2009 National Electrical Manufacturers Association. eiXtra is a biweekly e-newsletter for electroindustry professionals summarizing key manufacturer, standardization, and regulatory news. NEMA does not sell or release subscriber's personal information and will never willfully disclose individually identifiable information to any third party without first receiving your permission. Privacy policy.
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