In recent years, energy saving has attracted the attention of researchers due to environment, energy, and reliability issues. Energy saving due to these advantages is one of the major steps toward sustainable cities and society. In this regard, the low-voltage section of the distribution system, including buildings and public lighting systems (PLSs), has great energy-saving potential. Accordingly, the present work reviews the potential of different energy-saving options and their environmental impact on buildings of different sectors and PLSs. In addition to direct energy-saving options such as using renewable energy sources and energy-efficient luminaries, available indirect options such as transactive energy, using energy storage systems and demand response programs are reviewed. For both the building and PLS sectors, available control strategies and technologies and related energy and emission saving potential are discussed. The detailed highlights of the previous works associated with the location of each research or experimental study are given in this review study. Finally, the key findings regarding the gap in the literature of the energy saving topic are discussed. This study is influential for policy-makers to take effective actions for energy saving through existing approaches and technologies, and is beneficial for researchers of the energy saving topic.