LED street lights to be installed across Suffolk in £9.8m scheme

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LED street lighting
Image caption,
Suffolk County Council will replace 43,000 of the county's street lights with LED lamps

A £9.8m scheme to replace two-thirds of Suffolk's street lights with LED alternatives is to be rolled out.

Suffolk County Council said it would replace a further 43,000 of the county's street lamps with LEDs because they were "more energy-efficient".

It said it was expected to take five years for the savings to cover the cost of the multi-million pound investment.

More funds could be spent on fixing potholes by saving money on street lighting, the council said.

To date, nearly 16,000 of the county council's 60,076 street lights have been converted to LEDs, but further work stalled.

Andrew Reid, Conservative cabinet member for highways, said: "This work was started 10 years ago and it was the intention to continue with that work but other capital constraints have cut into that and money has been allocated elsewhere at different times when there have been pressures.

"If we can spend less on this [street lighting] we can spend more on fixing potholes and cutting back overgrown vegetation."

The council said the proposals, approved by Cabinet this week, were brought forward because energy prices were rising between 8% and 12% a year, with the new LED lamps able to shave as much as 60% off the energy bill.

Reduced carbon usage

Work on the conversion is expected to take place until autumn 2022, as reported by the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

It follows previous measures to save costs which involved turning some street lights off at 23:30 in quieter roads - a measure reported to save about £90,000.

Council estimates suggest carbon usage on street lights will be up to 80% less.

Mr Reid confirmed once the council's street lighting stock had been converted, it would help borough, district, town and parish councils convert their lights to LED.

It was hoped 1,430 street lights could be converted this year.

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