The switch to an energy efficient future in Latrobe

Latrobe City Council is working towards a municipality-wide switch to energy-saving light bulbs in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Using $1.8 million of federal funding, combined with $1.1 million from council’s capital works, Latrobe City is about to complete its Lighting Latrobe project.

About 2300 lights in five community buildings – Latrobe Regional Gallery, Latrobe Performing Arts Centre, Kernot Hall and the Morwell and Traralgon libraries – have been upgraded to light emitting diodes, or LEDs.

A further 5220 residential standard street lights, 226 residential decorative street lights and 14 park/path post top decorative lights have also been upgraded.

Latrobe City acting general manager of recreation and community infrastructure Jamey Mullen said the aim was to reduce energy and maintenance costs, ultimately benefiting ratepayers.

“We are undertaking this project to reduce the greenhouse emissions produced by its (council’s) operations and electricity and associated maintenance costs to ratepayers,” Mr Mullen said.

He said about 90 standard street lights, 200 decorative street lights and 35 decorative park/path post top lights were still to be switched over.

Once complete, council expects the Lighting Latrobe project will save about 1.9 million kilowatt-hours of electricity and more than 2500 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions each year.

That translates to an annual saving of more than $500,000 in electricity and maintenance costs, according to council presentations.

“Efficiency measures like this one ultimately reduce costs of energy and maintenance, which effectively frees up funds for other community projects,” Mr Mullen said.

“It also reduces the greenhouse emissions produced, which may help towards slowing the impacts of climate change.”