Islington Council backs charity pledge to switch all street lights to LED

  • All 11,350 street lights in Islington to switch to energy-efficient LEDs

  • Move will save the council an estimated £400,000 per year

  • An estimated 1,414 tonnes of carbon emissions will be saved per year – the equivalent of removing 924 cars from the road

Islington Council has signed a pledge by charity 10:10 Climate Action, affirming its plans to switch all street lights in the borough to energy-efficient Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) by 2022.

Compared to conventional bulbs LEDs have demonstrated energy savings of up to 50-70%.  They can also last for more than 20 years, while conventional bulbs last for 4-6 years, reducing waste and saving time and money on maintenance. By replacing all of Islington’s 11,350 street lights with the more efficient LED bulbs, including upgrading the borough’s 4,025 ‘heritage’ streetlights, the council says it will save more than £400,000 per year. It will also see the council cut an estimated 1,414 tonnes of carbon emissions per year, the equivalent of removing 924 cars from the road.

Whilst the benefits of LEDs have been known for a while, only 10% of councils nationally had switched to LED street lights by 2014, with the most recent estimate suggesting this has only increased to 20%. Islington Council committed to converting its streetlights to LED in 2015. Figures compiled by leading energy researcher Chris Goodall for 10:10 show that if all councils switched to LED they could collectively save £200million per year. 10:10 Climate Action is asking the public to speed up the process, and call on their councils to switch their street lights to LEDs within five years.

Neil Jones, campaigner at 10:10 Climate Action, said:

Islington Council deserves nothing but praise for taking the pledge to lighten up its streets with LEDs. In these tough financial times the money saved will make a real difference to people in the area. And the carbon-cutting potential of LEDs makes this move a no-brainer. That's why we’re calling on more councils to follow Islington's example and pledge to go LED by 2022.

Councillor Claudia Webbe, executive member for environment and transport at Islington Council, said:

As a council, Islington is committed to reducing the impact we have on our environment. We have worked hard to make sure we are ahead of our target of reducing carbon emissions in the borough by 40% by 2020. Once all the lights have been upgraded, the new LED street lamps – including our ‘heritage’ lamps – will help to save the council more than £400,000 per year, by reducing energy consumption and through lower maintenance costs.

By investing to save, Islington Council will have more resources available to protect frontline services, and will reduce the impact our borough has on the environment. That’s why we are proud to be delivering this project and proud to be signing up to 10:10’s ‘Lighten Up’ campaign.


For further information and requests for interviews: Daniel Jones, press and profile officer, [email protected] 0207 388 6688.

Notes to editors:

  • 10:10 Climate Action is a UK based charity that brings people together to take positive, practical action on climate change. We engage citizens and communities in finding solutions that benefit the climate as well as improving people’s lives today.

  • Lighten Up is 10:10 Climate Action’s campaign calling on councils to pledge to switch their street lights to LED lighting by 2022.

  • The full estimated savings calculated by Chris Goodall amount to £204,984,000 a year across all councils. This figure was calculated by taking an average of the savings from a 100% conversion to LED street lights for five councils that are representative of the spread across the UK. The average saving, which is estimated to be 60%, was then applied to the current lighting bill for non-LEDs, £341,640,000, giving us the figure £204,984,000 saved per year.

  • The saving of over 1414  tonnes of CO2 is equivalent to 924 cars, based on the average amount of CO2 produced per kilometre for new cars in the UK (120.1g), multiplied by the average number of kilometres driven (12,714km).