P257 million needed to shift to LED fixtures

The City Engineering Office informed local legislators that the city needs at least P257 million for the conversion of the over 8,600 compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and high-pressure sodium bulbs to the environmentally acceptable Light Emitting Diode (LED) bulbs.

Experts from the City Engineering office claimed the conversion of the city’s street lighting system to LED should be done on a staggered basis instead of doing it at one time considering that the local government cannot afford the huge fund requirement.

It was recommended that if the LED lighting system will be done at one time, then the local government should commission a company that has vast experience in the conversion of the street lighting system to LED.

Based on initial studies conducted by the said office, the recovery of the investment of the local government or the company if the project is done in one time will be at least five years computed on a 52 percent savings to be generated from the power consumption of the streetlights once converted to LED.

Pending before the local legislative body is a proposed ordinance for the immediate adoption of energy efficient lighting systems which could be installed in public buildings, street lighting system and on parks and major roads in the city for the local government to save on its excessive spending on power consumption of its lighting facilities.

Earlier, Resolution No. 446, series of 2011 was passed by the local legislative body that prescribed the terms of reference for the conversion of the city’s street lighting system from the conventional bulbs to LED bulbs but the local government was not able to implement the project because the Special Bids and Awards Committee (SBAC) failed to put in place the program.

Some local legislators questioned the city’s technical personnel on why was the city’s LED project in 2011 shelved without justifiable reasons.

Based on the results of the replacement of the lights within city hall to LED bulbs, personnel of the City Buildings and Architecture Office (CBAO) reported that there has been a significant reduction in the power bill of the city but the generated savings were eaten up by the increase in power cost charged by the Benguet Electric Cooperative (BENECO) for the first quarter of this year.

The local legislative body recognized the fact that the city will have savings once all its lighting system will be replaced with LED but there is a need for concerned departments of the local government to study which among the available LED bulbs will be most appropriate for the lighting system.

Local legislators agreed to the findings of the various technical personnel that it will be beneficial for the city to immediately convert into LED but it will be up to the available appropriation to determine how the project will be implemented. - Dexter A. See