The provision of streetlights across the island costs the government approximately $2.6 Billion at today’s rate and is projected to move beyond three (3) billion dollars in the new fiscal year. The Ministry of Local Government & Community Development and the Local Authorities have implemented a joint island-wide streetlight audit with the Jamaica Public Service Company Limited (JPS) during the 2012 – 2013 operating year. The audit was completed during the 2013 – 2014 operational year and a database created, which is available to the Local Authorities.
The Clarendon Parish Council also conducted a night audit in the parish to determine the percentage of streetlights which are not working. This data is necessary because JPS, according to the existing tariff arrangements, is being paid for all streetlights installed whether they are working or not and there is need for verifiable data to demonstrate that the company is being overpaid and thus open room for some level of negotiations on this matter. It will also put the company in a position wherein it has to respond more urgently to the need to effect repairs to reports of streetlights which are not working.
In order to arrest the apparent haemorrhage of government money for the payment of streetlights, several of which are non-functional or sub-performing, the Ministry will explore a number of strategies to contain and share costs. These measures include:
Financing and implementing a full replacement programme of the existing streetlights with more efficient lights (LED or solar LED);
Replacement of streetlights with LED (solar or LED): The main principle is that solar panel generates the sunlight in daytime and store the transferred electricity in battery, and during night it releases the power to LED lamp for working.
- In the same condition, LED Street light saves 50%-56% power than traditional HPS lamps. Based on the projected cost ($3 billion), the possible savings if all of the present stock were to be replaced could be up to $180,000,0000 million annually if costs remain constant.
- LED streetlights have extremely long lives - they don't have filaments that can quickly burn out. An LED light can last 100,000 hours
- LED Streetlights do not contain toxic chemicals like mercury, unlike traditional high-pressure sodium lamps or mercury-vapor lamps.
- These lights also have reduced maintenance costs because of their long lives, and they give off less heat than other bulbs.
- Because they last so long, LEDs are suitable for places where replacing light bulbs is expensive
- Unlike compact fluorescent lamps, they can be dimmed, allowing for more flexibility in controlling light levels.
- Some cities in other countries have harnessed LED lights to create clever effects, such as increasing in brightness when a pedestrian walks by or integrating systems that alert officials when a particular light needs maintenance. They can also be used to blink rapidly to signal to emergency responders where they are needed.
The Ministry of Local Government & Community Development, on behalf of the Local Authorities, is working with other key stakeholders including the Bureau of Standards to develop approved standards for streetlights; is preparing a request for proposal (RFP) for the financing and replacement of existing streetlights with more efficient ones, and on a small scale, implemented the installation of solar streetlights in strategic locations.
Streetlight Management System
A street light audit was completed and parish data distributed to all LAs in order to determine the best options going forward. Additionally, 28 users from all the LAs were trained and had their computers configured for the Streetlight Management application. This electronic database system was implemented in the LAs to effectively manage and monitor streetlights island-wide.
Locations of Streetlights Islandwide