Delhi is leading the nation in the drive to save power through its use of energy efficient lighting. Of the 255 million compact florescent lamps (CFLs) sold throughout the country last year, Delhi alone bought 45.9 million—a whopping 18 per cent, the highest for any city.
Here, power distributors like BSES have been offering CFLs at subsidised rates to its 25 lakh customers for the last two years.
After being high on CFL-powered energy efficiency, the city is now shifting its attention to light emitting diodes—which are far more energy efficient than CFLs and contain no toxics like CFLs which have heavy metal mercury.
“The government is thinking of offering subsidy to LED products as they are more energy efficient than CFLs. But their exorbitant cost is a problem. Its cost should be lowered to make it more acceptable to people,” said Dharmendra Kumar, Delhi Environment Secretary.
The environment department has also written to CFL manufacturers to place bins across the city to collect the fused lamps so that the mercury in them does not get dumped in the open and in the municipal solid waste stream.
Looking at the huge potential of LEDs, manufacturers are trying to reduce its cost and offer more household lighting solutions based on LEDs.
“We have now decided to import LED capsules, the core of the technology and assemble them here so that the cost comes down,” said Shyam Sujan, Secretary General, Electrric Lamp and Component Manufacturers’ Association (Elcoma).
Elcoma has tied up with Global Lamp Society for the research and development so that low-cost LED products can be launched in India.
All over the world there are only four companies that make LED capsules and chips (the core of the LED technology).
Power-starved Delhi has been high on energy efficiency for the past couple of years.
Owing to such a CFL overdrive and a variety of other energy-efficient technologies, Delhi saved 600 MW of power on the day of Earth Hour 2009, when thousands of households switched off their non-essential lights for an hour.