Lights down to save money

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THE Comhairle will be reducing the islands’ street lighting by one hour in a bid to meet energy targets and save money.

Last February, as parts of its budget setting exercise, the authority decided on a reduction in the number of hours that road lighting would be lit across the islands.

The plans is now to reduce the lights that are currently lit only part of the night by a further hour and that no lights outside an agreed area around Stornoway would remain light all night (dusk to dawn).

As a result of these changes, the Comhairle’s energy consumption will reduce, as well as its C02 emissions, and with the added potential for illumination fittings to last longer, savings will be made to operational costs.

The decision was taken following consideration of the feedback and suggestions from the various community meetings that were held across the islands towards the end of 2010 and the beginning of 2011; and is in line with actions that many other Scottish councils are taking to reduce their operational costs.

As some communities will be aware, work has already commenced in Lewis on implementing the reduction in lit hours and it is hoped that the majority of lighting sections across the islands will be working on reduced lit hours by September.

Works are initially focused on the main lighting sections which will offer the largest savings, with the intention that works on individual amenity lights will follow.