Energy crisis

Luxembourg City turns down the heat and cuts back on Winterlights

Christmas illuminations will be reduced as part of the city’s energy saving package. Photo: Christophe Lemaire/Maison Moderne

Christmas illuminations will be reduced as part of the city’s energy saving package. Photo: Christophe Lemaire/Maison Moderne

The City of Luxembourg has announced a series of measures aimed at reducing its gas consumption by 15% and electricity by about 5% this winter.

Luxembourg City on Wednesday adopted new regulations that will reduce the energy consumption in its buildings, infrastructure and public spaces. The move comes as part of a national effort to reduce natural gas demand by 15% between 1 August 2022 and 31 March 2023, in order to increase the grand duchy’s energy supply security.

The new package includes cutting back on heating in many buildings as well as lowering the water temperature in swimming pools. The Christmas market and illuminations will also be affected, with the most significant decision being to scrap the traditional ice-rink.

Ambient temperatures

The city’s administrative buildings and schools will have their ambient temperatures reduced from 21°C to 20°C, while theatres, cultural centres and museums will see a drop of one or two degrees.

The water temperature in public swimming pools, which is currently between 27.5°C and 29°C will be cut to between 26.5°C and 27°C and the ambient temperature will also be reduced by around 2°C. This will save some 12% of their energy consumption, the city reckons. A similar saving will be made by lowering the temperature in the city’s public sports halls which will drop from 20°C to 18°C.

Public lighting will also be cut as part of the energy saving measures. The amount of time streetlights are activated will be reduced by around one hour every day. The lights in the trees on the place d’Armes will only be switched on between 5pm and 11pm, rather than between 6am and 1am, cutting consumption by a staggering 68%. Official buildings and the national football and rugby stadium will only be illuminated during events or when there is a match.

No ice-rink

Christmas illuminations will only be switched on for approximately six hours a day, which will represent a further 66% saving. In addition, not having an ice-rink this year will save some 165 MWh, which is about one-third of the total energy consumption of the Christmas market. Gas heaters will also be banned at the market.

The City of Luxembourg has calculated that the new measures will contribute significantly to its aim of cutting gas consumption and electricity by 15% and 5% respectively. The council says that additional measures may be taken in light of new developments.