In a post last week, I discussed how switching to energy-efficient bulbs in street lighting could net the city big savings. Yesterday, the city announced a program to do just that. I am going to go ahead and take all of the credit for this move (not really).
All kidding aside, this is good news for Stockton on both a cost savings front as well as an emissions reduction standpoint. As discussed in an article last week, cities across the country are finding some significant savings in the replacement of older street light bulbs with energy efficient models. Specifically, the city of San Diego is predicting a drop of $1.9 million in their annual energy costs from the replacement of 35,000 street lamp bulbs.
This week, Stockton’s public works department announced a pilot program replacing 170 city lights with LED lights. The cost savings from the more efficient lighting is estimated at $9,000 a year. This amount may not seem like much, but remember, this is a pilot program. If Stockton decides to expand this program (and, really, there is no reason it should not), the city could see considerable cost savings over a longer period of time.
Finally, the city is making this switch without dipping in to the general fund by using grant money from the ARRA stimulus package. All around, this is a nice step forward, hopefully the city can find funding in the future to expand this initiative.