Currently there are beta test demonstrations of light emitting diodes (L.E.D) streetlights already in place on Line St., and Meadow Lane, according to Calhoun City Councilmember David Hammond.
The lights that are already in use were given to the city by Cooper Lighting, G.E., American Electric and Hadco Lighting, to be used in the beta test, and did not cost the city anything.
The benefit to having L.E.D lights implemented is they reduce the cost of energy, and according to City Council minutes, May was the best month in the City’s history for electric usage, showing a 4.5 percent increase from May of last year on electric system supplied.
With L.E.D. lights put into place it would cut costs of electricity by half or more, according to Hammond, who says with the lights in place now, the city is spending several hundred thousands of dollars.
After the city evaluated the (L.E.D.) lights output, energy consumption and overall comparison to the ones already in existence (non L.E.D.) they found an average of 62 percent reduction in energy usage with a 25 percent greater light output, according to the City Council minutes.
Hammond explained that the city is planning on replacing the existing lights on an “as fell” basis, by replacing the old lights that fail with new L.E.D. lights.
Another benefit to having the L.E.D lights implemented is the lights have a longer life span.
The new L.E.D streetlights would last, according to Hammond, three to four times longer than the existing one tend to last.
That’s not it though; the third part of the new strategic trifecta plan is the new L.E.D lights would require less maintenance, according to Hammond.
The L.E.D lighting is still rather new and the prices for these lights are still rather expensive, but like any new technology the more useful it becomes the cheaper the price become.
“The price has dropped by half since we started looking at the technology,” said Hammond.
He seems to be pretty optimistic to the fact that the prices are going to reduce even more
By the time the city plans on making the decision to go full L.E.D the price range for the lights will probably be as affordable as the once in use now, according to Hammond.
Hopefully soon the same lighting system that powers the flat screens we all use to watch sports games will expand our area of vision at night, along with cut a few dollars from the cities bills.