Richmond Valley Council has completed a $286,000 upgrade of street lighting that will result in annual savings of $133,000.
The introduction of new generation street lighting is curbing Richmond Valley Council’s electricity costs and reducing its carbon footprint. The council, which is responsible for Evans Head, Casino and surrounding areas, has completed a $286,000 upgrade of street lighting that will result in annual savings of $133,000.
John Walker, Richmond Valley Council’s general manager, states that the street lighting upgrade, which was carried out between May and June 2012, involved replacing about 1000 lights throughout the shire with more energy efficient lamps.
“While our street lights are owned and maintained by Essential Energy, without this energy efficiency project, council would have been paying about $400,000 a year for their maintenance and operation,” Walker imparts. “By working with Essential Energy to upgrade the lights, we’re expecting to realise savings of $133,000 annually, which equates to a 34 percent reduction in energy usage.”
Street lighting, which accounts for 22 percent of the council’s greenhouse gas emissions, is its third largest source of emissions after buildings and sewerage and water treatment. Throughout the shire there are 1129 lights for pedestrian use and 561 lights for vehicle use. The project replaced pedestrian lighting with more efficient compact fluorescents and vehicle lighting with high pressure sodium lamps.
Finance from Low Carbon Australia helped the council introduce the new generation street lighting. “Using finance from Low Carbon Australia has enabled council to free up cash flow, which will allow us to take on increased energy savings works in other areas this year,” Walker comments.
The project is eligible for Energy Savings Certificates under the NSW Energy Savers Scheme.