A £1 million proposal to reduce carbon emissions and light pollution in two national parks has been given the go-ahead by the local council.
The project will see 3,600 conventional streetlights switched to dimmable LED lamps, provided by Urbis and WRTL, in the South Downs and the New Forest National Parks.
It is claimed that the new lights will save an estimated £24,000 in energy bills each year, depending on the cost of electricity. The new system could also prevent 138 metric tonnes of carbon emissions.
Contractors SSE have been allocated responsibility of carrying out the upgrade.
A similar scheme installed in the Southampton town of Hedge End has proved successful in controlling light distribution onto the highway.
The LED scheme will aim to install lights on residential streets as opposed to main highways. Approximately 3,600 lanterns in residential areas will be replaced, leading to savings of an estimated 257,000kWhs per annum.
Members of the public such as Graham Bryant, chairman of the Hampshire Astronomical Group, have welcomed the new initiative. Mr Bryant, also a member of Campaign for Dark Skies, said “LED lighting is better because it is more controllable. It can be directed to light the ground whereas conventional street lamps throw a lot of light into the sky, up to 30 per cent in some cases.”