Money-saving streetlighting project set to be completed next year

All of Oxfordshire’s streetlights are scheduled to be converted to energy efficient LED units in the next 12 months, saving millions of pounds and thousands of tonnes of carbon.

In 2021, Oxfordshire County Council embarked on a four year project to fit all of the county’s streetlights with environmentally friendly light-emitting diodes (LED).

A total of 86 per cent of lights have now been converted. When completed, the £38 million project is expected to lead to energy savings of millions of pounds over the next 20 years.

The LED lights will reduce the amount of carbon dioxide being produced by 70 per cent. Before the conversion programme started, the county’s streetlights accounted for around 7,596 tonnes of CO2 every year – representing nearly 35 per cent of the council’s total emissions.

Councillor Andrew Gant, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highway Management, said: “The LED streetlighting programme is biggest single project that we, as a council, are undertaking to reduce our own carbon emissions. So I am delighted it is on course to be completed next year, despite problems due to issues such as global material shortages.

“This will significantly help us to achieve our target of becoming a carbon neutral organisation by 2030 and save council taxpayers millions of pounds over the next two decades. It’s a real win-win.”

Last year, 24,383 LED units were fitted meaning that, by the end of March 2023, 51,992 of Oxfordshire’s 60,326 streetlights, wall mounted lights and lights on electricity poles have been converted.

As well as funding the LED conversions, the £38m is also enabling the replacement of 23,000 lighting columns, which are at the end of their structural life. This part of the project is scheduled to be completed by the end of March 2025.

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