After cities, energy efficient LED lights will now light up the rural areas of the country. Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), under the Ministry of Power, will retrofit 10 lakh conventional street lights with LED lights in Gram Panchayats of 7 districts in Andhra Pradesh. This is the first project for rural LED street lighting in the country under the Government of India’s Street Lighting National Project (SLNP).
The project to be implemented by EESL is specifically designed keeping in mind the needs of people living in villages. This replacement drive in rural areas will help the gram panchayats to cumulatively save approximately 147 million units of electricity annually, and lead to reduction of 12 crore tonnes of CO2.
The entire upfront capital cost of this project is being funded by French Development Agency Agence Française de Développement (AFD). As part of the project, EESL has agreed to carry out the entire annual maintenance and warranty replacement in these gram panchayats for a period of 10 years.
Speaking on the occasion, Shri Saurabh Kumar, Managing Director, EESL said, “EESL takes pride in announcing the first rural LED street lighting project in the country, and there could be no better place to begin this than Andhra Pradesh. The state has always welcomed our initiatives with open arms and has truly spearheaded the energy efficiency movement in the country. We would also like to extend our gratitude to AFD for the financial support in implementation of this project, without which it could not have achieved this scale.”
Earlier this year, Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh Shri N. Chandrababu Naidu, had stated that approximately 30 lakh conventional street lights across villages in the state would be replaced by LED street lights by 2018. Through the installation of 10 lakh LED street lights, EESL has assured the state government of approximately 59 percent savings in electricity, which translates to an annual monetary savings of ₹88.2 crores per annum. In the first phase, the replacement will be undertaken in gram panchayats of 7 districts – Guntur, Prakasham, Nellore, Kurnool, Kadapa, Ananthapur and Chittoor.
Interestingly, Andhra Pradesh was the first state to seek assistance from EESL to replace conventional street lighting with LED lighting in Visakhapatnam, after the cyclone Hudhud caused extensive damage to the then existing street lighting infrastructure. Ever since then, EESL has installed over 5,90,000 LED street lights in the state. These installations have led to an annual savings of over 7.8 crore kWh, translating into an annual reduction of over 65,000 tonnes of CO2.
Nationally, over 23 lakh conventional street lights have been replaced by LED street lights in 21 states of India.
In India, street lighting sector offers a significant potential of energy efficiency and cost savings. As per the 18th Electric Power Survey of CEA, the estimated energy consumption in Indian public lighting sector is 8478 M KWh in 2012-13 and is constantly growing at a CAGR of 7 percent. Keeping in mind this growth rate, Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi launched 100 cities National Programme on January 5, 2015 to convert conventional street and domestic lights with energy efficient LED lights. Under Street Light National Programme (SLNP), the government aims at replacement of 1.34 crore conventional street lights across the country.
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