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Now That's a Saving

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Cambridgeshire is in the middle of having all its 55,000 street lights upgraded, replaced or removed as part of a PFI scheme which will save energy, not least by dimming the lights in the early morning and turning them off earlier.

They leafleted us all about it a year ago now and I read it and then read it again and then wrote an email to them which said:

We received your leaflet this week to tell us you are upgrading our street lights which sounds like an excellent plan however I was a bit bemused by the quoted savings which both the leaflet and your web site says will save "over 8.5 million kilowatts of electricity per year".

That makes little sense. Did you perhaps mean 8.5 million kilowatts *hours* per year? Given that you claim to be saving 4,500 tonnes of carbon emissions per year and the Carbon Trust quote a conversion rate of 0.5246 Kg CO2e per unit for grid electricity that seems more likely.

I'm in the middle of an mail inbox purge at the moment1 and came across that email again and realised I'd never had a reply so I checked their web site. Yup, nothing has been changed.

It's a shame mind you: if it was true 8.5 million kilowatt years of electricity really would have been a saving!

  1. Currently down to 86 with 39 unread, it was about 800 with 250+ unread when I started - I'm aiming to get it down to empty at the end of each day eventually or as close as possible.

Written 26/02/13

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