The Transylvania Times -

Brevard Lights To Change To LED – Brevard, NC


Last updated 7/20/2020 at 12:47pm

City streetlights in Brevard will soon be converted to the more energy efficient, longer lasting light-emitting diode (LED) lights, with the help of a collaborative effort.

On Wednesday, City Council voted to approve an agreement with Duke Energy to proceed with the project that began two years ago.

The cost to convert the 489 sodium streetlights to LED is $20,000 and will be paid over a four-year period, beginning on Aug. 1.

Jim Reynolds, with the Pisgah Group of the N.C. Sierra Club, said the Sierra Club had initially agreed to contribute $2,000 to the project, but after a grant approval, the club approved donating an extra $4,000, with $5,000 of the total covering the first year.

Other partners in the project are the Brevard Lions Club and the Brevard Rotary Club.

“I think it’s just a wonderful plan on which we all worked together as this team, and what was not possible for just the city to accomplish is now something that can be possible because we brought all of these players in for a common cause,” said Councilwoman Maureen Copelof.

Duke Energy Regional Manager Craig DeBrew said the company has changed “thousands of light fixtures to LED in the Carolinas.”

“We find that our customers are really liking those fixtures,” he said. “They like the fact that they do a good job in directing light downward, where the surface needs to be lit. They like the fact that they are energy efficient and they like the color of the fixtures, so we are excited that this project gives us the opportunity to change nearly 700 streetlights in the City of Brevard. The thing that’s unique is that you’ve heard about is the broad community support, the nonprofits coming together. I think one of the things that really attracted me to this project is the energy efficiency. We will be changing out mercury vapor fixtures that are 175 watts and replacing those with 50 watt LEDs for over a 70 percent energy saving; and a high pressure sodium fixtures, most of those are 150 watts, we will replace those with 70 watt LEDs for over a 50 percent energy saving.”

Duke Energy will also be converting 200 mercury vapor lights to LED at no cost to the city.

The timeline for completion, DeBrew said, depends on the material, which has to be “specially made,” but it could be finished by the end of the year.

According to, “widespread use of LED lighting has the greatest potential impact on energy savings in the United States. By 2027, widespread use of LEDs could save about 348 terawatts per hour (compared to no LED use) of electricity. This is the equivalent annual electrical output of 44 large electric power plants (1,000 megawatts each), and a total savings of more than $30 billion at today’s electricity prices.”

Copelof said it’s “not just about the money.”

“It’s about decreasing the amount of power that we use, and switching to lights that are friendlier for the wildlife and the dark sky,” she said. “Besides the fiscal impact, there is an environmental impact that is really beneficial, too.”


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