5 Feb 2010

Street lights off late at night

Some good news on high-street illumination. Some might recall I have been pushing for our street lights to be switched off late at night - this not only restores the night sky, saves the County significant sums of money and carbon but also has not been shown to lead to any more crime or accidents (more of that below). Well now the Environment Agency says new rules will force big businesses to switch off lights and displays at night to meet new limits. The Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) scheme requires businesses to cut consumption or face stiff fines.

Although not likely to be an issue in Stroud District it may effect other parts of the County - from April, all businesses and public sector organisations that use more than a certain amount of energy must register for the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme and, from next year, pay for the carbon they emit. Indeed it is estimated to effect around 5,000 firms and public sector organisations which use more than 6,000 MWh of electricity - equivalent to an annual bill of around £500,000.

Street lighting

There has been a considerable delay in getting the switch off - already some lights go out in Whiteshill and Ruscombe Parish following a survey which showed 9 people want lights left on, 16 people want one-third of lights turned off and 31 wants two thirds off completely. In Randwick we have just heard that 38 out of the 39 street lamps will be converted to 'part night' - the remaining one light at 'The Stocks' will stay on due to a resident's wishes!

See re Essex scheme and more about why it is a good idea here.

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