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Council / Streetlight upgrades underway

THE FIRST phase of a three-year programme to upgrade Shetland’s streetlights to LED is now underway.

A photo of an LED light taken a few years ago at Lerwick's Bank Lane.A photo of LED lights which have been in place at Lerwick’s Bank Lane for a number of years.

The project to make all streetlights LED started recently in Cunningsburgh.

Shetland Islands Council agreed last year to invest £2.8 million in upgrading its streetlights to energy-saving LED.

The current lanterns are said to use at least 100 per cent more energy than LEDs, meaning there will be eventual cost and carbon savings. Some areas, like parts of Lerwick, are already LED.

A spokesperson for the council – which has nearly 4,000 streetlights in its roads inventory – said the “work will begin with replacing streetlight columns where necessary, then replacing the lanterns with LED units”.

Chairman of the council’s environment and transport committee Ryan Thomson added: “Once this spend to save project is completed and fully implemented there will be a revenue saving for energy, maintenance and carbon tax of approximately £3.8 million over the project’s 20 year lifespan.

“The existing lanterns use at least 100 per cent more energy than the LED equivalent so the replacement would not only reduce costs, but would also assist with meeting the council’s emission reduction targets.”

The LED lights will bring a cooler tinge to Shetland’s streets and roadsides, in contrast to the orange glow of the current sodium lamps.