As part of a city-wide initiative to increase energy efficiency, the city council of Asheville, North Carolina, approved a resolution to purchase up to 900 new LED street light fixtures. Funding for the project is from the US Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) program and totals $290,000. Because the city is in a regulated utility market, the purchase of LED fixtures must be through energy provider, Progress Energy.
Progress Energy, a regional supplier of power currently identifies only one manufacturer of LED roadway fixtures, BetaLED, a division of Ruud Lighting, on its list of approved streetlight fixture suppliers. In order to qualify for a reduced tariff, which reflects the lower energy consumption of LED fixtures, the city is required to sole source the purchase of the BetaLED fixtures.
The city of Asheville established a Strategic Operating Plan which emphasizes reduction of the city’s carbon footprint by 4% annually. City officials estimate that the 900 streetlight installation will reduce the city’s carbon footprint by 0.7%, and result in approximately $48,492 in annual savings. These savings will be budgeted toward additional energy efficient projects, according to Maggie Ullman, energy coordinator for the city of Asheville. The city’s long term goals include replacement of all of the city’s 8,300 remaining high pressure sodium (HPS) and mercury vapor streetlight fixtures.