The Madurai Corporation has been saving big on electricity every month, thanks to the conversion of street lights in 72 of the 100 wards in the city under the smart city scheme. Corporation officials say that not less than Rs 22 lakh is being saved on electricity charges paid towards street lights.
“We recently calculated electricity saving and found that it ranged between Rs 22 lakh and Rs 25 lakh a month consistently in the last five months. This is expected to go up marginally with the installation of bulbs in a few more pockets soon,” said City Engineer S Arasu.
There are around 53,000 street lights in the city, out of which 30,500 in 72 wards in the core city were replaced with LED bulbs under the project at a cost of Rs 25 crore. Tube lights in the remaining 28 newly added wards were converted into LED light four years ago under Integrated Urban Development Mission scheme. Sodium vapour and other lights were not converted.
So far 29,939 LED lights have been fitted while the rest are being fixed. In all, 60 per cent of the 29,939 bulbs were of 20 watts, 11 per cent of 40 watts, 2 per cent of 60 watts, 10 per cent of 90 watts and 14 per cent of 120 watts. Bulbs of 200 watts constituted 2 per cent, which have been used only at a very few places where high intensity illumination is required, the officials said.
“The tubelights, which were in use before LED conversion, were 40 watt bulbs. The electricity saving was achieved by replacing 18,126 such tubelights with 20 watts LED lights. Apart from this, LED lights also have longer durability and thereby result in lesser complaint from residents,” said an official. Only 5 per cent of work is remaining, which will be completed soon. The LED conversion will also help to provide uniformity in city lighting.