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Wednesday, November 30, 2022

The city of Linz is affording the Christmas lights again this year

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This was announced by Mayor Klaus Luger (SP) on Wednesday. “The energy consumption is so low that this tradition should be continued”, he justified the decision. The costs for assembly would remain the same as before at 300,000 euros. Electricity costs would probably increase, but that was “manageable and affordable”. The energy costs for this season are budgeted at 6,000 euros; they have been lower in recent years. In the 2020/21 season, for example, around 3,000 euros (with an energy consumption of around 12,400 kWh) were spent.

The Christmas lights create a “cozy and pleasant atmosphere, especially in these tense times,” said Luger. “In addition, we are helping to liven up the streets of Linz in the colder months.” Commissioning will therefore be commissioned to the same extent as in 2020. This is an open-ended contract for assembly and disassembly from 2012. There are no plans to pass on the costs to business people.

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Security City Councilor Michael Raml (FP), who had previously advocated keeping the Christmas lights, is pleased with the decision. “Christmas is a festival of traditions and the festive lighting is indispensable,” he says. For the city politician, there is still a need for action and discussion, and the unlimited contract for installation, which costs 300,000 euros a year, should be questioned. “The discussion about the Christmas lights should now be used to initiate an innovative new concept and new tender for the following years,” is Raml’s approach.

Restricted effect lighting recently

Linz had recently restricted the effect lighting. The buildings in question are now only illuminated from nightfall until 11:00 p.m. at the latest; there is no lighting from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. Overall, the city hopes that this will result in savings equivalent to the electricity consumption of eleven single-family homes per year. So far, however, there are no specific specifications for space heating in municipal buildings. However, the city said it would be turned back around night and the employees were asked to reduce. However, this cannot be implemented in the same way everywhere – it is probably easier in official buildings than in kindergartens or care facilities.

The other cities are still looking for ways to save energy. At the request of the APA, Wels Mayor Andreas Rabl (FP) announced an extensive package that would include measures for room temperature and lighting – the latter has not yet been reduced – as well as investments in photovoltaics. The traditional ice skating in the city center is not shaking at the moment. In Steyr, a working group is currently exploring possibilities. According to a spokesman, it has been decided that there will be no ice skating rink on the town square this year. The Upper Austrian Association of Municipalities has not yet issued any concrete official recommendations to the municipalities.

According to the office of Governor Thomas Stelzer (VP), the state of Upper Austria is focusing on reducing non-safety-related lighting inside public buildings as well as switching off facade and advertising lighting. In addition, all state officials would be provided with special energy-saving tips. Further steps for autumn and winter are being planned.

Source: Nachrichten

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