August 20-27, 2007

Toronto business group joins municipal initiative to expand LED use in public areas

Toronto is joining Raleigh, North Carolina in a municipal program to install light-emitting diode (LED) lighting throughout its infrastructure.

The Toronto Association of Business Improvement Areas (TABIA) recently signed on to the "LED City" program, launched in February by Raleigh officials and LED manufacturer Cree, of Durham, North Carolina. The program promotes collaboration among municipalities as they deploy energy-efficient LED lighting.

As a part of the LED City program, TABIA will evaluate, deploy and promote the use of LEDs across a variety of lighting applications such as parks, parking garages and in architectural settings. In addition to reducing energy use, mercury-free LED fixtures are a more environmentally friendly lighting source.

Toronto has been an early adopter of LED lighting as TABIA has been actively demonstrating its advantages to the city's businesses and residents over the past four years. As a result, the use of LEDs has evolved from a holiday-light exchange and installation program to the application of LEDs in retail displays and streetlight installations.

The most dramatic of these was this summer's conversion of the CN Tower lighting to more energy-efficient LED lighting, which will cut energy use by 60% from that used to illuminate the Tower in the 1990s. TABIA says Toronto's use of LEDs further supports its participation in the William J Clinton Foundation's Climate Initiative to accelerate greenhouse gas emissions reductions and mitigate climate change.

TABIA is a non- profit umbrella organization representing Toronto's 60 Business Improvement Areas, who in turn represent more than 25,000 business and property owners. The group is dedicated exchanging information among BIAs, encouraging joint initiatives and mutually beneficial projects, and assisting in pooling resources for the greatest possible benefit to members. More information is available on-line at www.toronto-bia.com.

Cree develops and manufactures semiconductors designed to increase the energy performance of LED solid-state lighting, power and communications products. The company's product families include blue and green LED chips, lighting LEDs, LED backlighting units, power switching devices and radio frequency devices. More information is available on the company's Web site, www.cree.com.

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