Colder, darker in city of Luxembourg this winter
Luxembourg's capital will be a little colder inside, less illuminated outside and a bit less festive at Christmas, as Russian gas cuts since it invaded Ukraine force Europe into winter energy-saving measures.
The temperature inside schools, crèches and public buildings will go down by one degree, swimming pool water will become 1.5 °C colder, and ice rinks at the Christmas markets will be scrapped, Luxembourg city officials said on Wednesday.
The measures are projected to slash the city's gas consumption by 15% and electricity by around 5%, officials said. The steps are part of the quest by Luxembourg and other EU countries to voluntarily cut their natural gas demand by 15% this winter.
Other municipal governments have announced steps ranging from Mamer not operating a ski slope installed last year, to Hesperange putting its Christmas lights on a timer. The national government, meanwhile, is preparing rules for mandatory energy rationing if such voluntary measures don't cut demand sufficiently to match supplies after Russian delivery cuts.
The capital city's announcement on Wednesday conformed to Energy Minister Claude Turmes's urging to cap office and public building temperatures at 20° and to reduce lighting. The city's plans include reducing temperatures in schools and crèches from 21° to 20°, letting temperatures in theatres drop to 18° and to 17° in museums.
The exterior of public buildings and monuments will be lighted less often and street lights will stay dark an hour longer each day, the city said.