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Indian cities boast big energy savings from switching to LED street lighting

Date
17 April 2013
Indian cities boast big energy savings from switching to LED street lighting

NEW DELHI: Cities and municipalities across India are slashing their electricity consumption and energy bills by switching street lights to low carbon LEDs (light-emitting diodes), according to new data made public by The Climate Group in a national-level workshop held in New Delhi yesterday.

The event, 'LED street lighting: Policy Adoption for technology promotion', was jointly organized by The Climate Group and the British High Commission (BHC) with participants including manufacturers, energy companies, planning authorities and government groups from across India, such as energy development agencies from Punjab and Maharashtra and the Ministry of Urban Development.

Energy savings

During the workshop the following was announced:

  •  Haldia Development Authority in Haldia, West Bengal, is saving around 70,000 kilowatt hours of electricity and over US$9,000 in energy bills each month since installing LED street lights.
  • The Thane Municipal Corporation in Maharashtra reported electricity savings of 47% from LED retrofitting.
  • Kolkata Municipal Corporation in West Bengal boasted electricity savings of 52% by switching from HPSV to LED lamps in a pilot project.
  • Cuttack Municipal Corporation in Odisha and Burdwan Development Authority in West Bengal announced that they are working towards undertaking installation of LED street lights.

LED program

Supported by the BHC, The Climate Group has been working closely with 'urban local bodies' (ULBs) in different Indian states for the last three years, to install pilot LED street light projects and design policy frameworks for large-scale adoption of the technology.

Mark Kenber, CEO, The Climate Group, stressed the need for a structural shift in handling the issues related to mitigating climate change in his opening remarks at the workshop. Spotlighting the work of our flagship LED program, he emphasized that climate change presents an opportunity for 'real business in real cities'.

Lauding the developments, Sanjay Wadvani, British Deputy Higher Commissioner for Eastern India said: "The LED street lighting technology will go a long way towards greener and cleaner municipalities across the states of West Bengal, Odisha and Maharashtra. The project is an excellent example of how cities can cut their costs in power consumption and make significant energy savings. I hope local authorities will take this up as a viable business model and showcase LED street lighting technology as a key part of their smart city infrastructure, while also combating climate change.’’

Financing adoption

Attended by more than 40 participants, the dialogues covered the financial implications related to large scale adoption of capital intensive technologies like LEDs. Initiatives' experiences with public-private-partnerships and ULBs on meeting capital requirements through own funds were also shared and discussed at length.

It was acknowledged that the real challenge lies in making financial arrangements for large-scale uptake of the technology, as banks and other financial institutions prefer low risk investments. However the workshop concluded on a positive note, with agreement that information sharing through network-building such as today's workshop will keep driving the LED revolution forward in India.

Read our related reports:

Lighting the Clean Revolution: The rise of LEDs and what it means for cities

Global outdoor LED trials

India's Clean Revolution