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Governments, municipal councils and stakeholders in Africa have realised the need to modernise existing streetlight infrastructure to achieve energy efficiency targets and reduce carbon emissions.

A recent report issued by Transparency Marker Research (TMR), forecasts developing economies including Africa, Asia Pacific and the Middle East to contribute significantly towards the growth of the solar street lighting market through to 2025.

Government regulation to reduce energy costs and partnerships with international and regional non-governmental organisations will result in increased streetlight programmes, according to TMR.

West Africa looks into LED lighting

In Nigeria, the Lagos State government in partnership with UK-based Low Energy Designs Limited, has unveiled an initiative that aims to install 10,000 LED streetlights in Eke.

In addition, the duo have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to construct a $7 million LED Lighting and Hybrid Energy Power Assembly plant.

The facility will be used for development, testing and training of LED lighting and renewable energy technologies.

The facility and installation works is expected to provide an estimated 500 jobs for the local communities. Read more: A street lighting case study from a South African municipality

Low Energy Designs Limited will operate and monitor the streetlight installations, which will be installed over an area covering 300 kilometres and cover 31% of the state’s total streetlights. Installation works are expected to be complete over the next 12 months.

Olawale Oluwo, Commissioner for Energy and Mineral Resources, said: “As a government, what we are doing is that we are not installing poles, we are not providing security, we are not bothering ourselves with diesel, we are not worried on Fridays and Saturdays about people coming back from clubs knocking down our poles.

“All those have been outsourced now. We are not going to be worried about that. We just buy light from investment of this LED UK with all their installations; they manage it, they provide the security, they power it and as long as we see the light, we pay. That is what has changed today.”

Liberia onboard

Meanwhile, the Liberia Electricity Corporation says it will install 2,000 LED streetlights in Monrovia in line with a decree issued by the country’s new President, George Manneh Weah.

According to a local publication, the president issued the decree as part of his Pro-poor Agenda.

The installation is expected to improve visibility, security, economic activities and lives for residents in the capital.