With the winter solstice on Saturday, Dec. 21, it’s uplifting to have turned the corner on darkness.
As the amount of daylight gradually increases each day, the time the streetlights are on gets shorter.
I bet you don’t think about it in quite those terms, as I do. You see, the Holland Board of Public Works electric crews and I are responsible for maintaining the street and pedestrian lights in the Holland area, as well as traffic signals at 100 intersections.
One might think it is expensive to operate those lights and signals. It is, but far less so for Holland. First and foremost, the investment in streetlights and traffic signals is for public safety.
Additionally, our city leaders have invested in better quality light output and energy efficiency by converting to light emitting diode, LED, technology. The typical LED streetlight is three times more energy efficient than the orange-hued, high-pressure sodium light it replaced.
LED streetlights provide better visibility and significant cost savings for the community. The cost savings come in the form of less energy consumption and reduced maintenance.
Holland has been a leader in converting its public lighting to LED. It began in 2010 and was substantially completed by 2016.
We have some small developments, associations, and private lots that we are working on today and plan to complete in the next three years.
The conversion was spurred by Holland’s commitment to be a world-class energy efficient city as detailed in the Community Energy Plan. Lowering energy consumption saves money, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and improves our carbon footprint per capita, a key metric in the plan.
That means cleaner air to breathe and improved quality of life. The Community Energy Plan also helps to ensure our community’s economic competitiveness.
Are the lights in your home, indoors and out, converted to LED?
In the LED light bulb giveaway blitz on those days, you will have your choice of two 60 watt-equivalents or one indoor/outdoor flood light.
Converting to LED is smart. Enjoy the days getting longer.