City set to slash power bill

SWITCHING to energy efficient street lights could slash Ipswich City Council's power bill by more than $1 million.

Ipswich took part in a three-year South East Queensland Energy Efficient Street Lighting Trial, which showed some new globes used up to half as much power as traditional street lights.

The new street lights also reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 40 to 50%.

City Works Committee chairman Trevor Nardi said switching from traditional mercury vapour lights to 'green' light bulbs would cut council's street lighting bills.

"If these green light bulbs were introduced, council's electricity bill for street lighting would be significantly less because less energy would be used," Cr Nardi said.

Cr Nardi said council currently spent $3.5 million on street lighting energy and maintenance per year.

He said that there were more than 20,000 street lights in the Ipswich council area.

The trial results suggest 32-watt compact fluorescent bulbs as the best alternative to the current 50-watt mercury vapour lights.

Energy Minister Stephen Robertson said the energy efficient lights were just as effective as traditional lights.

"They also used 40 to 50 per cent less power than existing lighting lamps yet delivered similar or better lighting outcomes," he said.

Mr Robertson said Energex would now work with Ipswich, along with the four other participating councils, to select lights that were best suited to local suburbs.

He said the technology will then be made available to all councils in south-east Queensland. Ipswich City Council provided $40,000 to the cost of the trial.



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