In a NIS 12 million investment, the northern municipality of Ma’alot-Tarshiha intends to become the first city in the world to replace all of its public lighting fixtures with LED bulbs.

Ma’alot-Tarshiha, a mixed Jewish-Arab city located about 20 km. east of Nahariya in the Western Galilee, began its lighting overhaul this week, which will replace 13,000 light fixtures in public institutions and on streets by the end of 2013.

By the time the revamp is complete, the city of some 20,000 people will save more than 80 percent of its electricity costs associated with public lighting, which will amount to approximately NIS 3.5 million annually and NIS 25m. in the next decade, the municipality predicted on Sunday.

The project, called “Going to the Light,” is administered by the Israeli start-up Juganu Systems.

While predominantly funded by the municipality, about NIS 5m. of the NIS 12m.

cost comes from the Environmental Protection Ministry and the Economy and Trade Ministry, the city said. The costs of launching the project will, however, pay for themselves within three years, the municipality stressed.

Meanwhile, money saved via the LED lighting switch will be transferred to a dedicated investment fund that will be used to implement and integrate energy efficiency, infrastructure and water programs, according to Silas Libilya, the municipality’s deputy directorgeneral.

“There is a sense of pride and pioneering in the city,” Libilya said. “However, we are not resting on our laurels, and we will continue to promote other green projects in Ma’alot- Tarshiha.”

The 13,000 LED light fixtures will crop up in 16 public buildings, dozens of offices, seven schools and six public parks, the city said. By replacing the

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