Fall 2016
Introducing: Mid-Hudson Strategies for LED Streetlight Conversion

The Mid-Hudson Street Light Consortium will create a more affordable pathway to LED street light conversion for Ulster, Dutchess, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan and Westchester municipalities in the Central Hudson Gas & Electric, Orange & Rockland, and New York State Electric & Gas, and Con Edison territories. Converting to LED street lights has the potential to deliver electricity cost savings of up to 65 percent to municipalities. A 2014 study by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, Street Lighting in New York State: Opportunities and Challenges, found that if this were accomplished statewide, an estimated 524 gigawatt hours of electricity and $97 million would be saved annually.

Once the first 20 Mid-Hudson municipalities take advantage of the program and convert to LED street lighting, greenhouse gas emissions are expected to be reduced by more than 42,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide over the next 15 years, equivalent to removing 8,840 cars off the road over this span.

The Mid-Hudson Streetlight Consortium is a two-year project funded by the NYSERDA's Cleaner, Greener 
Communities program.
Quick Start Guide To Working with the Mid-Hudson Street Light Consortium
Many Mid-Hudson municipalities are eager to convert but encounter hurdles understanding their options and successfully negotiating the outcome they seek.  This is where the Mid-Hudson Street Light Consortium can help. 
Read More: How to join?

Upcoming Webinar: 
Strategies for Bringing LED Streetlights 
To Your Municipality

Thursday, November 15
9:00am - 10:30am

Join us for another in our series of webinar discussions on affordable steps that municipalities can take to convert to LED streetlights. 
  • Why conduct a streetlight inventory?
  • Rent vs. own?
  • Negotiating a purchase price with you utility 
  • Choosing a financing option
  • How/when to participate in an aggregated purchase
Whether your municipality decides to buy LED streetlights or lease them from your utility, it is prudent to understand the activities that would go into preparing for streetlight conversion.

Even if your municipality has started down the path to conversion, new information is available about NYSERDA funding opportunity, relevant Public Service Commission filings, and finance mechanisms. 

The webinar is free but requires registration.

The Case for ArcGIS Audits: Streetlight Inventory Now Can Save $$ Later

As municipalities begin their annual budget process, many are searching, as always, to save taxpayer dollars. There are powerful tools municipalities now can use to save in the future, as they plan to take advantage of one of the biggest money saving opportunities out there: conversion to energy- and money-saving LED streetlights. To get started, your municipality can:
  1. Request your streetlight inventory from your utility.
  2. Consider retaining Computel or a similar firm that conducts billing audits for municipal utility bills. They are paid a percentage of the refund that they obtain for you.
  3. Consider an ArcGIS streetlight inventory to ensure that your LED replacement light fixtures will have the correct light levels (wattage and lumens) depending on application: residential, business or roadway. (Note: At least one New York State utility performs an ArcGIS audit after the municipality asks to purchase its lights; ask your utility representative.) Some municipalities conduct their own GIS audits using widely available technology; others prefer to hire a firm to do it. 

Sorting Through The Facts: Health Effects of LED Lighting

The U.S. Depart ment of Energy has responded to recent guidance issued by the American Medical Association regarding LED lighting. The DOE's recent newsletter,  SSL Posting, is  intended to clarify some of the facts and confusion surrounding the AMA  pub lication . Since then, a number of lighting experts and organizations have weighed in with very useful perspectives, including DOE's  Municipal Solid-State Street Lighting Consortium in the most recent issue of  The Light Post .

Both the SSL Posting and the MSSLC Light Post offer helpful guidance for those in the lighting community who are in the midst of planning streetlight conversion projects or find themselves fielding questions related to the AMA guidance. Please feel free to share these links with your partners, members, and other interested parties.

Further information: Jim Brodrick ( DOE.SSL.Updates@ee.doe.gov).

Webinars: Streetlight Audits, Financing and Regulatory Framework for Streetlight Conversions
Courtney Strong Inc. has hosted webinars on three related topics to describe affordable steps that municipalities can take NOW to  begin exploring conversion to LED streetlights:
  1. Education. Understand conversion opportunities, regulatory and legislative changes in relation to LED streetlights, and resources available to assist communities. View webinar.
  2. Auditing. It is important to verify what streetlight equipment is currently installed in your municipality and whether that matches the records of your utility. Download Slides.
3. Financing. Learn how other communities have financed and installed LED streetlights and review financial considerations for your community.  View Webinar.

T o view all webinars, visit  courtneystrong.com/services/webinars

Consortium Submits Comments to Public Service Commission Calling for Transparency in Streetlight Purchase Agreements
Interested Municipalities are Also Encouraged to Submit Comments
The streetlights installed in most Mid-Hudson municipalities, outside of those in ConEd territory in Westchester County, are owned by the utility. Many municipalities seeking to maximize savings from conversion to LED streetlights are interested in acquiring their streetlights from their utilities in order to then install the LED lights of their choice. This acquisition currently must be negotiated by the municipality with the utility and utilities in the region have divergent, and sometimes opaque, approaches to this valuation process. Read More.
Let The PSC Hear From Your Community! Download Draft Letter
 offering suggestions to the Public Service Commission for how to improve transparency re: costs involved in transfer of streetlights to municipalities.

Meet our team: To learn more about the Mid-Hudson Street Light Consortium, visit  nystreetlights.org
Street Lighting in NYS: Opportunities and Challenges
Report Written by Energy Resource Solutions for NYSERDA

The Street Lighting in New York State report presents results of an initial analysis of potential savings and barriers associated with upgrading existing municipal street lighting throughout New York State to solid-state light-emitting diode (LED) technology. 

Jurisdictions around the country have already begun to realize the benefits associated with upgrading to LED street light technologies. Cities such as Boston, Los Angeles, New Orleans, and Seattle have already completed large-scale conversions of their streetlights. Read More.
Regional Wrap-Up: Highlighting Early Adopters of LED Streetlights
Scarsdale Kicks Off LED Pilot Project
The Village of Scarsdale recently kicked off its LED streetlight pilot. The village's AdHoc Committee on LED Streetlights welcomes visitors to see the lights, and Committee Chair Ron Schulhof will provide an annotated map for a self-guided tour of the lights, or, more than likely, he'll take you on a tour himself, if time permits.

A central concern of the committee has been to ensure that any new LED streetlights have appropriate light levels for their usage. 

"Given our residential setting, it was determined we needed to sample lights of varying color and brightness before moving forward with an LED streetlight pilot," said Schulhof.  "Most if not all current installations in Westchester utilize a whiter light (4000K).  While a community may decide this is the right light for their streets, it may be helpful for them to view a spectrum of colors. We have sample streetlights currently installed in 2700K, 3000K and 4000K in varying brightness and on different types of streets."  

Further information: Ron Schulhof, chair, Scarsdale Ad Hoc Committee on LED Streetlights,

City of Yonkers
In July 2013, under the leadership of former Sustainability Director Brad Tito and Mayor Spano, the City of Yonkers launched the LED Street Light Replacement Project to replace all 12,000 of the city's cobra heads with new LED lights. The LEDs will cut Yonkers' energy bill by 60%, save taxpayers $18 million in energy costs over ten years and reduce Yonkers' carbon footprint by 3,000 tons annually. 

The new lights are also extremely durable and last upwards of 80,000 hours or nearly 19 years. That means less ongoing maintenance and more taxpayer savings. They're also a lot brighter than the old lights. That means improved lighting and increased public safety in our neighborhoods.

Maintenance Practices For LED Streetlights
Webinar Hosted By The U. S. Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

This April 14, 2014 webinar answered important questions about the maintenance and reliability of LED streetlights, and how to take these issues into account when planning and preparing for a transition to LED street lighting. 

Presenters Glenn Cooper of the City of Boston, Stephen Crume of the City of Seattle, and Patrick Batte of the City of Las Vegas discussed actual field experiences of their respective LED street lighting programs and lessons learned along the way. 

They also reviewed failure rates and failure modes experienced to date and the associated best practices their programs have developed in response.