Local councils across the country are looking to drive positive change within their communities, in the effort to reduce carbon emissions and respond to the ever-increasing climate emergency.
In 2019, Sywell Parish Council in Northamptonshire took a big step towards reducing their greenhouse gas emissions and energy bills by investing in new LED (light-emitting diode) street lighting. The upgrade has also improved lighting levels, ensuring a well-lit environment for parish residents.
The Council replaced 65 SOX (low-pressure sodium) lanterns across the parish with more modern, energy-efficient LEDs, which now consume 75% less power than older technologies and are set to reduce their annual energy bills by £2,100.
Four heritage lanterns were also upgraded to LED with a retrofit solution into the lantern instead of a full lantern replacement, allowing the streetlights to retain their historical grandeur.
The Council applied for a £14,993 interest-free loan from Salix to fund 92% of the £16,235 project cost, based on the carbon and energy savings. The loan will be repaid to Salix in 5 years.
As a result of the LED upgrade, Sywell Parish Council is expecting to benefit from a reduction of 3.38 tonnes of carbon emissions every year, along with savings of £49,680 from their electricity bill over the lifetime of the technology.
In addition to the savings opportunity, many parishes are now looking to upgrade to LED as the manufacture of low-pressure sodium lanterns has been discontinued.
The interest-free Salix loan supported the Council by removing the need to use their own capital upfront, making it more affordable. The funding allowed them to upgrade all streetlights to LED at once, instead of through routine maintenance, therefore benefiting from the savings more quickly.
Maureen Holliday, Parish Clerk for Sywell Parish Council, said: “The Salix loan opportunity was key to making the decision to replace all of the lights as a single project. The quality of the lighting is much improved, and the Council were pleased to be able to show they were pro-active in addressing this green issue.”
Martha Chafer, Client Support Officer at Salix Finance, said: “Salix is proud to support local councils like Sywell Parish Council, who are working to drive down their carbon emissions and save public money. We are looking forward to supporting many more local councils to create positive change across the country as we work towards a more sustainable future.”
Salix interest-free funding is currently available to support a variety of carbon reduction projects such as street lighting, internal lighting and heating improvements.
The Salix team are available to discuss any project ideas at an early stage, with no requirement for an application.
For further information or to speak to a member of the team, click here.