LED Street Lights Doubled Since 2018 But Target Missed
A solar microgrid-powered streetlight at a village in Bihar. (Photographer: Prashanth Vishwanathan/Bloomberg) 

LED Street Lights Doubled Since 2018 But Target Missed

India has doubled the number of LED street lights since March 2018 even as it missed the scaled-down target to replace 1.34 crore conventional street lights with energy efficient LED lights by March 2019.

The number of LED street lights in the country has doubled from 49 lakh in March 2018 to 1 crore as on Oct. 1, 2019, according to a statement by the Power Ministry. The government, under the Street Lighting National Programme launched in January 2015, had set out to replace 3.5 crore conventional street lights with smart and energy efficient LED street lights by March 2019.

The target was later scaled down to replace 1.34 crore conventional street lights with energy efficient LED lights by March 2019. Now the target for replacing these street lights has been fixed for March 2020, the statement said.

On crossing the 1 crore mark, Minister for Power, New and Renewable Energy RK Singh said it is “another milestone towards achieving the country’s energy goals”.

“Energy efficiency and conservation are important pillars of India’s efforts in moving towards a sustainable future. It is with great pride that we dedicate the 1 crore smart and energy efficient LED streetlights to the people of India,” Singh said at an event in New Delhi. “These streetlights, covering 2.7 lakh kilometers, not only illuminate the lives of the citizens and enable more savings but also empower people with better and safe mobility.”

It was estimated that replacing 3.5 crore conventional street lights would result in energy savings of 9 billion kilowatt hour per year, reduction in installed load 1500 megawatt and reduction in carbon footprint of 6.2 million tonnes of CO2 per year. The total cost savings of municipalities every year was pegged at Rs 5,500 crore.

Energy Efficiency Services Ltd.—a joint venture of public sector undertakings—is the nodal agency for implementation of the SLNP programme.

The programme runs without any budgetary allocation from the central government. The cost of using efficient lighting is repaid by municipalities from savings in energy and maintenance expenditure over a period of time.

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