The Narrandera Shire Council has begun work to upgrade more than 750 street lights to energy efficient technology, saving ratepayers hundreds of thousands in electricity bills as well as helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The switch to LED technology will see a 183MWh per year reduction in power use, delivering savings of approximately $44,000 each year in maintenance and electricity costs.

Narrandera Shire Council Mayor, Neville Kschenka, said Council was committed to becoming more sustainable, and the LED upgrade is just one initiative in Council’s strategies to achieve energy and operational efficiencies in the next nine years.

“Street lighting is a significant expense for Council, costing around $77,300 each year, and with more than 750 streetlights across Council’s footprint, the upgrade will go a long way to reducing costs and providing significant long-term savings,” Mr Kschenka said.

“LEDs are far more energy efficient, require less maintenance, have a longer life and provide significantly brighter lighting in our streets.”

Deputy General Manager Infrastructure, Shane Wilson, said LED streetlights consuming around 17W each will replace existing high-energy lights consuming between 50 and 100W.

“Council is investing approximately $390,000 to complete the bulk upgrade, with the costs expected to be recouped within a period of eight years,” Mr Wilson said.

Essential Energy streetlight manager, Adele Finch, said the organisation continues to work closely with councils across its distribution area and is committed to providing information and services that are appropriate to councils’ needs and those of the communities they serve. Ms Finch acknowledged the valuable input from the Southern Lights NSW Project, whose partners are working closely with Essential Energy to ensure the successful delivery of the project.

“Essential Energy is responsible for the maintenance and billing of more than 160,000 streetlights serving more than 85 councils across New South Wales and parts of Southern Queensland,” Ms Finch said.

“Public lighting plays an important role in providing safe, secure and attractive public areas for both pedestrians and motorists.

“The new LED street lighting for Narrandera Shire Council will not only provide a more reliable, better quality lighting service, but will deliver savings of more than 48 per cent in energy consumption.

“This type of light also provides future potential for other ‘smart’ applications to be added and will allow Essential Energy to more effectively manage the streetlight network and respond more promptly to potential outages.”

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