Caerphilly County Borough Council is set to carry out a review of street lighting in the borough after being landed with “unexpected” energy price hikes.
Funding of £165,000 needs to be found by the council after an increase of 13.4% in energy costs this year.
The council has around 27,300 street lights across the county borough and work has already been done to save money by switching off lights in certain areas overnight, dimming and making many of the bulbs more energy efficient.
Councillors identified converting all lanterns to LED technology as a preferred option earlier this year.
But new energy saving plans are now being drawn up by the council after being notified of the unexpected hike.
Additional options being considered by the council include permanently switching of the existing part night lighting, which operates between midnight and 5.30am.
Council officers believe the most beneficial approach would be to convert all lighting to LED and implement part-night lighting across the borough except at junctions and major town centres.
This would save £939,840 per year and carbon reduction savings of 2,836 tonnes.
Another option put forward is to permanently switch off all street lighting except at junctions and major town centres.
This could bring an annual saving of around £1 million.
A council report says: “The switch off option is always an alternative although this has its own significant costs and consequences.
“It is assumed some 25% of street lights would need to be left operational.”
The report says it may also be possible to “mix and match” proposals.
The options were discussed by the council’s regeneration and environment committee on Tuesday, October 30, ahead of the issue going before cabinet at a later date.
The report added: “Officers views are that the most beneficial approach would be to progress a wholesale conversion of the street lighting stock to LED lanterns.
“This would meet the Salix funding requirements to achieve a pay back within eight years and would be implemented over a time period of approximately 45 months and convert all residential lighting to part-night lighting.”
It also noted that dimming or switching off street lights may affect vulnerable groups such as the elderly and lone persons in feeling vulnerable and lead to an increased fear of crime.
But it adds that lower energy alternatives to conventional lighting can have a greater luminance.
A wider consultation may be required before implementing any of the proposals.