A streetlight near Plaza Chowk in Ranchi which will be replaced in the near future. Picture by Hardeep Singh
All capital arteries will soon bask in the glory of LEDs (light-emitting diodes) as the futuristic energy efficient and environment friendly lamps are set to replace old yellow streetlights in the coming months.
The state urban development department has given its go-ahead for a complete switch over to LED lamps to improve illumination on the streets and save power consumption by at least 70-80 per cent.
To start with, the department has provided Rs 2.73 crore to Ranchi Municipal Corporation for purchasing 1,200 LEDs. Initially, areas like Lalpur Chowk, Project Bhavan, Booty More, Circular Road and Main Road will benefit from the project. However, the civic body will eventually replace a total of around 19,000 sodium vapours from the city streets in a phased manner.
Deputy secretary (urban development) Manjulata Kanth said the main objective was to save energy. “Normally, sodium vapours consume more electricity than LEDs. Our state is already reeling under acute power crisis. So, we need to look for energy efficient alternatives to reduce consumption,” he said.
Deputy mayor of Ranchi Sanjeev Vijayvargia said they had already received the fund from the department and would start work on the project within this month.
According to civic body sources, the RMC would purchase LED lamps and other equipment on its own.
Elaborating on reasons that prompted the switch over decision, Vijayvargia said that vapour lights did not have a very long life. Besides, they are voltage sensitive and turn defunct in case of rampant fluctuations. “LED lamps are important for a sustainable city, giving clearer and better quality vision on the streets,” he added.
Further a vapour lamp has longevity of two-three years, while LEDs run for 15 years without any problem and need minimum maintenance. This apart, sodium vapours emit carbon dioxide that pollutes the air, but LEDs are safe and have long-term environmental benefits.
The civic authorities are also planning to replace old worn-out wires and lampposts in different parts of the city.
A few months ago, the civic body installed around 600 LEDs along the Harmu bypass, Kanke Road, near Raj Bhavan and the airport. The initiative has been encouraging. After the success of the pilot project, the civic authorities are now gearing up to turn the capital into an LED city.