City’s wait for LED bulbs gets longer


Bangalore, February 01, 2018: The BBMP announced on December 29, 2017, that it would float a tender to replace streetlights with LED (light-emitting diode) bulbs within a few weeks. More than a month after the announcement, there is no sign of a tender.

Five lakh streetlights are to be replaced with LED lamps. The budget is Rs 15 lakh per ward for old wards and Rs 10 lakh for new ones.

“Government work takes time. We have a clear plan for how to go about it. We are just waiting for government approval so that the work can be started,” said Govindaiah, BBMP executive engineer, east zone.

About 20,000 streetlights have been replaced so far, as reported by The Observer earlier.

The BBMP budget in 2017 had allotted Rs 23 crore to replace streetlights with LED lamps.

Asked about the delay, BBMP engineer-in- chief MR Venkatesh informed The Observer: “There hasn’t been any delay. A few of them have been replaced. The work is still in progress. Sixty days are provided for a tender above Rs 1 crore. As soon as the tenders are approved, contractors will be finalized and work will begin.”

It seems the city will have to wait another month for the promised energy-saving lamps. LED is a highly energy-efficient lighting technology that uses at least 75% less energy than a sodium vapour lamp. LED lamps last up to 25 times longer.

Bengaluru has 4 lakh sodium vapour lamps of 250 watts, with a life of about 10,000 hours. A 150-watt LED lamp can last up to 50,000 hours.

BBMP spends about Rs 12 crore on lighting streetlights every year. LED lamps will bring down that cost to about Rs 6 crore. The BBMP will save an additional Rs 30 crore a year in maintenance cost, BBMP executive engineer Sreenath informed The Observer.

Under the government of India’s Street Lighting National Programme, over 21 lakh conventional streetlights have been replaced with LED lamps across the country. The installation of LED lamps has resulted in annual energy savings of 295 million kWh (kilowatt hours) and a reduction of 2.3 lakh tonnes of carbon dioxide emission annually,
according to information on the website of the power ministry, government of India.

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