“We project we can achieve 45-percent or higher energy savings with the new BetaLED® fixtures we are installing, compared with the high-pressure sodium lights we are replacing,” said Mayor Bert Cottle. “As we look ahead and anticipate rising energy costs, investing in LED technology becomes even more attractive. Community feedback on the initial lights has been overwhelmingly positive. Valdez citizens like the quality and color of the new LED lights and they are happy about the projected energy and maintenance cost savings.”
The BetaLED fixtures can be operated at three light levels. Initially, the fixtures will be operated at a higher setting for maximum light output during the winter months, when snow removal activities require high light levels. Going forward, city officials can choose to switch the lights to a lower operating level, depending on actual light-level requirements, which can potentially increase energy savings to 60 percent.
Valdez initially installed two trial street lights outside City Hall in January 2009 and solicited feedback from the community. The city began replacing the first one-third of its streetlights in December 2009 and expects to complete the full conversion by 2011. The new LED lights are expected to last ten times longer than the high-pressure sodium lights currently in use.