A NEW funding package which will allow energy-saving variable lighting technology to be introduced to all of Fife’s street lights has been agreed by councillors.
Members of Fife Council’s environment, enterprise and transportation committee agreed to the lighting efficiency project at their meeting last Thursday.
Last summer councillors agreed the Light Fife Green street lighting policy, following trials in locations around the Kingdom, including Kirkcaldy’s Oriel Road.
It means any lighting columns due for replacement should be upgraded with aluminium columns and using ‘white lighting’ and variable lighting technology based on the nature and usage of an area.
Last year this led to 1274 street lights being upgraded at a cost of £3m.
However since then, Council officers have found a way to fund the installation of energy-saving lamps and variable lighting in street light columns on the 70 per cent of the network that is not due for renewal.
This will be funded by reinvesting the savings made from reducing the Council’s electricity use.
The six year ‘spend to save’ project will begin in April next year and is expected to cost around £8.6m.
Under the initiative by 2017 over 70 per cent of the Kingdom’s street lights will have been upgraded to new, brighter energy-saving lamps.
It is thought by switching to the new style of light, Fife’s street lighting bill will be reduced by around 30 per cent a year.
Last year the Council spent over £2m powering the region’s 61,000 street lights.
Councillor Ross Vettraino, vice chairman, said: “The new street lighting has been welcomed by everyone in the streets in which it has already been introduced.
‘’By redistributing the existing funding and re-investing the savings in electricity costs, we can upgrade all of Fife’s street lights to the new standard at no extra cost.’’