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Nation's Mayors Place High Priority On Energy Efficiency And New Technology Use

Mayors Unveil Survey of Energy Efficiency and Technologies in America's Cities During 82nd Winter Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Nearly 300 Cities Provide Data on Local Energy Initiatives

WASHINGTON, Jan. 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Despite budget constraints, U.S. Mayors expect to significantly expand their investment in energy technologies over the next five years, according to a new survey of nearly 300 cities highlighting how cities are deploying new energy technologies to make their city operations and communities more energy efficient. 

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The survey, titled Energy Efficiency and Technologies in America's Cities, was unveiled during The U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) 82nd Winter Meeting in Washington, D.C. at a session with mayors and U.S. Energy Secretary Moniz at the Capital Hilton.  The survey can be found at usmayors.org/2014energysurvey.

"This survey shows again how mayors are leaders in energy innovation, deploying new technologies, pursuing new efficiency systems, reducing their communities' energy use and lowering costs for their taxpayers. Their best practices as well as the findings of this survey confirm that investing dollars in city energy efforts is a very good investment for the private sector and the nation," said USCM President Mesa AZ Mayor Scott Smith.

Done in conjunction with Philips, the survey also indicates that mayors plan to make energy-efficient lighting technology (LEDs as the primary example) a top priority over the next two years.  LED/energy efficient lighting was also overwhelmingly rated as the "most promising" technology for reducing city energy use and carbon emissions, with more than four in five cities of those surveyed (82 percent) reporting.  

"The impact of lighting on an urban environment cannot be underestimated.  It is simply one of the most important steps that Mayors can take to make their cities feel safer and meet the sustainability goals of the 21st century city," said Bruno Biasiotta, president and CEO of Philips Lighting Americas.  "When we partner with forward-thinking communities, making their city buildings more energy-efficient, their streets brighter and safer, and turn darkened structures into iconic symbols of their cities, we not only aid in cost savings, urban recovery, and civic pride, we provide truly meaningful innovations.  Our survey results show that mayors recognize this and we can help them take action."

In addition to lighting, retrofitting public buildings also ranked as a top priority in improving the energy efficiency of city infrastructure.  Significantly, mayors expect to use their own local resources, followed by partnerships with the private sector, as the sources of financing these technologies.  And in terms of the actual deployment of new technologies, survey findings reveal that more than seven in ten mayors believe their local utilities are now their city's most important partner in doing so.

"Mayors remain optimistic about the energy technology marketplace, with two in three cities anticipating increased investment, whether it is for state-of-the-art lighting or solar energy systems. It is not only cities who have a stake in this success, but the U.S. economy when new industries prosper because of these homegrown efforts," said USCM Energy Committee Chair Gresham (OR) Mayor Shane Bemis.

Of note, survey results also indicate that with recent weather events and associated power outages, three in four cities have developed plans to keep vital city services operating during sustained outages, and within three years, nearly 90 percent of all cities surveyed expect to have such plans in place.

Tom Cochran, USCM CEO and Executive Director said, "This survey provides timely and useful information on how mayors are leading in ways that save taxpayers money, reduce dependency on foreign energy, curb harmful air emissions, and grow jobs, businesses and the economy. With this survey data, we are establishing a record of local success that continues to build over time.  Our partnership with Philips – the Mayors' Lighting Partnership and this survey effort – is an example of how public-private collaborations can further mayoral leadership in this area."

About the survey. This report was prepared by The U.S. Conference of Mayors and sponsored by Philips. From November 25, 2013 through January 14, 2014, cities could complete the survey electronically, with 288 responses received by the deadline. By email, the Conference contacted nearly 1,400 mayors, most representing cities with a population of 30,000, requesting mayors to complete the survey. More than one in five mayors participated in the survey for a 21 percent response rate. We would like to thank all those who participated in the survey for their efforts and timely responses.

About the United States Conference of Mayors:
The U.S. Conference of Mayors is the official nonpartisan organization of cities with populations of 30,000 or more. There are nearly 1400 such cities in the country today, and each city is represented in the Conference by its chief elected official, the mayor. Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/usmayors, or follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/usmayors.

About Royal Philips:
Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) is a diversified health and well-being company, focused on improving people's lives through meaningful innovation in the areas of Healthcare, Consumer Lifestyle and Lighting. Headquartered in the Netherlands, Philips posted 2012 sales of EUR 24.8 billion and employs approximately 114,000 employees with sales and services in more than 100 countries. The company is a leader in cardiac care, acute care and home healthcare, energy efficient lighting solutions and new lighting applications, as well as male shaving and grooming and oral healthcare. News from Philips is located at www.philips.com/newscenter.

SOURCE The U.S. Conference of Mayors

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