Madrid starts installing Christmas lights amid energy crisis debate

CHRISTMAS lights are already installed in Madrid as part of a debate on energy saving and energy efficiency.

There have been calls for a reduction in the number of lights installed this coming festive season, but it is unclear whether Madrid Mayor José Luis Martínez-Almeida will reduce the number of lights.

He said Madrid will have Christmas lights but will ‘make sure they are lit efficiently and energy-efficiently’. The lights are normally turned on the last Friday in November.

Christmas at Madrid’s Puerta del Sol in the past. Photo: Adobe Stock

It was his response to Ecological Transition Minister Teresa Ribera’s call for “creative solutions” for Christmas lighting.

The mayor refused to consider keeping the lights off “because they are a tourist, commercial and economic attraction for the whole city of Madrid”.

Alicante Mayor Luis Barcala took a similar stance following a Valencian government proposal that all municipalities should turn off 20% of their public Christmas lights to save energy.

It is one of eight energy saving proposals that the Valencian government, under President Ximo Puig, has submitted to the Ministry of Ecological Transition.

But Barcala weren’t impressed. He said: “We need a plan to help municipalities improve energy efficiency instead of coming up with a thoughtless idea about Christmas lights,” Barcala said.

“President Puig did not realize that Christmas lighting in the region is crucial for trade and tourism.

“All the lights in Alicante are LED bulbs and the display encourages business, hospitality and tourism in the city, which will be even more important in a time of inflation and falling shopping,” said- he concluded.


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