Leave it to Mayor V: If there is hyperbole to be had, it shall be his. And so it was at the UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen Tuesday: Instead of staying home to take care of potholes, budget deficits and mushrooming pot shops, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa was on a European tour, hobnobbing with world leaders, and touting the “fact” that Los Angeles — and you know this — is a world capital of sorts when it comes to green-tech, LED street lighting.
“Los Angeles' LED Street Lighting Retrofit Program is the largest program of its kind worldwide,” Mayor V. stated. Well, perhaps it's the largest such plan of its kind. You see, only about three percent of L.A.'s 140,000 street lights have gone “light emitting diode,” those bright little buggers you see as indicator lights on dashboards and consumer electronics.
With only 4,500 street lights having been converted to LED in the city, there are more such lights sitting on SoCal Audi dealership lots (the German car maker uses them for its distinctive parking lights).
But, of course, that wouldn't stop Mayor V. from making a grand proclamation. He says the LED program — when it reaches its goal of replacing 140,000 street lights sometime in oh, say, the 2090s — “will reduce carbon emissions by more than 40,000 tons each year, the equivalent of taking 6,700 cars off the road.”
Bravo mayor. You so green.