Energy Waste

Discuss the greatest threat to amateur astronomy today

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Energy Waste

Post by Lawrie »

In the controversy between nuclear and wind power it is alarming how much energy is wasted. If all the street lights in towns and cities were turned off at midnight (as it was, once upon a time) the energy saved in one night would probably be more than that produced by wind power in a year.
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Re: Energy Waste

Post by joe »

Lawrie wrote:If all the street lights in towns and cities were turned off at midnight........
........we could then see all the flying pigs :D
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Post by mark_smith »

turning all the street lights off ahhhhhhhhhh wouldn’t that be nice.

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Post by Robin Scagell »

I heard (admittedly quite a few years ago, and from an unrecalled source) that it costs a council only £2 a year in electricity to keep a streetlight burning all the night compared with switching it off at midnight.

Should anyone say that it actually costs more to switch lights off compared with keeping them on, I was told by the chap fixing a light outside my home that the cells that switch off at midnight are the same cost as the all-night ones. Fortunately I have one of the midnight variety (actually about 00.30, which is 01.30 BST).

I was also told that the reason it costs so little to keep them burning is that the streetlights provide a base load for the nuclear power stations -- the energy is sold really cheaply. These days we are closing down these stations, so maybe the equation is starting to swing the other way.

It would be very useful to find out how much one's council spends needlessly illuminating the streets at 3 am, when they next want to increase council tax. But sadly, they regard streetlighting as a visible way of showing that they are doing something and many householders feel safer with their gardens illuminated than if they were black. Though of course if your garden is dark, any would-be thieves are obliged to use torches which then draws attention to themselves.

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