There are approximately 2.3 million street lighting lamps in service in Australia. The annual energy cost of public lighting in Australia exceeds $125 million.  Street lighting is the single largest source of carbon emissions from local government, typically accounting for 30–60% of their total emissions. 

At a glance...



Energy Rating Label


New Zealand

Street and Public Lighting





The Street Lighting and Smart Controls Programme (SLSC)

The SLSC Programme, initiated by the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australasia (IPWEA), brings government and industry together to accelerate the uptake of LED street lights and smart controls using best practice to improve energy productivity and energy affordability for local government, improve road safety and support the Government’s smart cities agenda.

In conjunction with the Australian Government, IPWEA released a strategic Roadmap for the SLSC programme in December 2016. The SLSC Roadmap examines Australia’s policy objectives that relate to modernising street lighting and quantifies the benefits of widespread adoption of best practice lighting technologies. The Roadmap also summarises the current situation, identifies current barriers and presents recommendations for governments and industry to focus upon in identifying an agreed action plan.

Download the SLSC Roadmap and other free resources including international case studies and reference documents from the IPWEA SLSC website.

Street Lighting Strategy

The Draft Street Lighting Strategy was developed to address the requirement of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) National Strategy on Energy Efficiency (NSEE). Measure 4.1.4 in the NSEE related to increasing the energy efficiency of street lighting. The draft Strategy identifies a targeted group of priority actions that can significantly alter energy use and greenhouse emissions from the provision of street lighting.

The E3 committee has since taken action on several of these key areas and outcomes will be linked to on this page.

Energy efficiency requirements for road lighting designs and luminaires

The aim of this study was to conduct an assessment of existing international methodologies, standards and guidelines for establishing energy efficiency requirements for streetlights, and related performance requirements for lighting installations for various classes of roads and identify options that may be suitable for application in Australia and New Zealand, particularly within the context of AS/NZS 1158.

The study recommends a threefold approach to achieve energy efficiency for road lighting:

  1. minimum energy performance standards for luminaires
  2. normative disclosure of a road design energy efficiency classification scale
  3. voluntary selection (from tendered design options) of a preferred solution by the procuring agency.

The study was submitted to Standards Committee LG-002 Lighting for Roads and Public Spaces, and considered as part of the review of AS/NZS 1158.  SA/SNZ TS 1158.6 - Lighting for roads and public spaces - Luminaires – Performance, published on 14 October 2015, includes a minimum luminaire efficacy performance rating for road lighting based on this advice.

Standards are available for purchase from SAI Global or www.standards.co.nz

Review of Road Lighting Design Classification System

Following on from the report ‘Energy efficiency requirements for road lighting designs and luminaires’ the E3 committee commissioned a further study into the concept of a Road Lighting Design Classification System. 

The study took data from a representative sample of 89 Australian and New Zealand Road Lighting Designs and applied the proposed classification system to assess and rate the designs.

The review found:

  • the proposed lighting design rating methodology provides a useful comparative metric.

  • a wide variation in the energy performance of the road designs evaluated, with the highest rated V Category design exhibiting ten times the energy performance of the lowest. In P Category designs the spread was even wider, with the highest being 27 times the lowest.

  • while LED technology was dominant at the higher performance levels, some road lighting designs employing LED delivered low performance outcomes, demonstrating that achieving efficient street lighting solutions is about a combination of both product selection and good design.

The review recommended some modifications to the proposed design classification method to align with recent changes in international standards.  This review has now been submitted to Standards Committee LG-002 Lighting for Roads and Public Spaces for consideration in relation to their review of AS/NZS 1158.

Street light asset values in the National Electricity Market (NEM) and Western Australia

Marsden Jacob Associates (Marsden Jacob) was engaged by the South Australian Department of State Development on behalf of the Equipment Energy Efficiency Committee to examine a number of market and regulation related street lighting issues. Specifically, processes used to establish street light asset values in the National Electricity Market (NEM) and Western Australia, wider issues related to the regulation of the assets and the market for street lighting services, and possible amendments to the Rules which may be required to effectively facilitate customer choice in this area.