Auckland Transport has made great progress on New Zealand’s most ambitious LED replacement programme.
Auckland Transport owns and maintains more than 110,000 streetlights, approximately one third of New Zealand’s total lighting stock and the largest source of direct electricity consumption of all of our assets.
Most of the region’s streetlights will change from golden yellow light to white light. A policy change has seen the establishment of an accelerated renewal LED conversion programme which enables all councils to access capital fund to undertake this type of work.
International experience has shown that white light is also a factor in crime prevention; delivers greater comfort and security and improves visibility and reaction times for drivers and pedestrians, resulting in fewer vehicle crashes and injuries.
In October 2014, Stage 1 was approved and saw 44,000 high-pressure sodium streetlights replaced with energy efficient LED lights. This provided Auckland Transport with 11.2 GWh of energy savings and an estimated $1.7 million reduction in our electricity bills each year. The LED technology also saves Auckland Transport an additional $1.2 million per year in maintenance costs.
The energy saved through upgrading 44,000 streetlights with LEDs is enough to power nearly 1,500 homes for a year, rising to over 3,500 homes when we have completed the whole programme.
Stage 2 of the streetlight retrofit was approved in April 2018 and will replace an additional 49,000 high-pressure sodium lights over the next five years. This next stage of upgrades is expected to deliver an additional 16.3 GWh of savings, resulting in a cost reduction of $2.6 million per year. Maintenance costs will be further reduced by $1.3 million per year.
All of the LED streetlights are connected to a central management system (CMS). This system can provide a daily report to contractors advising of any problems on the network, reducing the numbers of calls to our call centre. Additionally, the CMS can decrease light levels with dimming functions. This allows for reduced nightglow and further energy savings during off-peak hours.