In an effort to reduce the electricity consumption of its streetlights by 50% the George Municipality is set to replace its aging infrastructure with modern Light Emitting Diode (LED) streetlights.

The project, which was initiated by the municipality’s Electro-Technical Department, forms part of its goal of becoming the “greenest” municipality in the country.

According to the municipality approximately 75 LED streetlights have already been installed in Nelson Mandela Boulevard to date and a further 760 streetlights and 270 highmast lights will be installed over a two year period.

A viable project

The municipality with the assistance of Clinkscales Maughan-Brown Consulting Engineers applied to the Department of Energy (DOE) for funding. A R7 million grant was received for the 2017/18 financial year and a second R7 million for the 2018/19 financial year.

“The grant application process required a comprehensive baseline study and business plan to identify viable projects taking into account the initial procurement and implementation costs of equipment and services and the potential savings in terms of the reduced operating costs to be realised on completion of each project,” the municipality notes.

Driving down costs

The municipality believes that the project will not only help reduce electricity consumption but it will also drive down maintenance and operations costs.

“The estimated operating savings per annum equates to nearly half a million rand for streetlights alone. In addition the LED’s have a predicated operating lifespan of up to 100 000 hours, which is on average three times as much as conventional streetlights, thereby also significantly reducing maintenance costs,” the municipality concludes.