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You are here: Home Page > Council and Democracy > Council News > Archived News > March 2010 > Dimming Lights-Trimming Costs

Dimming Lights - Trimming Costs

Wednesday 3rd March

 

As part of its ongoing commitment to tackle climate change, Bedford Borough Council is investigating how to reduce carbon emissions from its street lighting.

The Council is responsible for more than 14,000 street lights throughout the borough and replacing all of them with more energy efficient lamps would cost more than £16million.

Therefore, the Council is looking at improving the technology used by introducing LED street lights. These have a life expectancy of 25 years, compared to just 4 years and use considerably less energy.

In other parts of the Borough, where introducing LED lighting is not suitable, the Council is working with local residents who may be in favour of changing the way existing street lights are used.

Dimming lights along main traffic routes. This can be aligned to traffic flows and reduces energy consumption by 25%.

Trimming street lighting. By turning on lights 10 to 20 minutes later and similarly turning off earlier around 92 burning hours can be saved per year.

Turning off lights for part of the night. Trials are ongoing by other local authorities and the Highways Agency for lights to be switched off, mainly in rural areas, between midnight and 6am.

Councillor Charles Royden, Portfolio Holder for the Environment, said: “"We are always looking for ways in which we can cut costs for local taxpayers and protect the environment, and being innovative with street lighting presents an opportunity to do both.  

“I would emphasise that any changes to local street lighting will be done in consultation with local residents. We are prepared to look at radical changes, such as turning lights off for a period, or overnight, but only where a community is keen to make the change.  

“Whatever changes might be made, whether lights are turned off overnight, dimmed or just come on a little later, they will be made in partnership with local residents.   

"Any changes made to street lighting in the Borough will help us to be more efficient in terms of how we spend taxpayers’ money but will also help us in our efforts as part of the national 10:10 climate change campaign."

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