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New lighting goes up in airport

Investment expected to save $1.2 million over two decades

Over the past six weeks, the Albany County Airport Authority has been working on a new project to replace its 15-year-old lightning fixtures in the airport’s terminals with brand new, high efficiency LED and florescent bulbs.

Over the past six weeks, the Albany County Airport Authority has been working on a new project to replace its 15-year-old lightning fixtures in the airport’s terminals with brand new, high efficiency LED and florescent bulbs. Submitted Photo

— Travelers might not notice the difference, but the Albany County Airport’s decision to install LED lighting will be quite visible on the airport’s electric bill.

Over the past six weeks, the Albany County Airport Authority has been working on a new project to replace its 15-year-old lightning fixtures in the airport’s terminals with brand new, high efficiency LED and florescent bulbs. There won’t be a noticeable change in the look of the new lighting, but the 1,969 new bulbs will save the airport more than $1.2 million in utilities over the next of 20 years.

The new lights are located in the baggage claim, the third floor terminal offices, the art and culture exhibit area, the observation level and the Albany Authority conference room. Some lighting will also be replaced in restrooms and vendor areas. Acting Chairman of the Albany County Airport Authority Kenneth Doyle said in a statement the Airport Authority is always looking for innovative ways to improve the airport.

“This project will result in a significant operational cost savings and reduce the airport’s carbon footprint,” he said in the statement.

LED (or light emitting diode) lights are becoming increasingly common as the systems become more affordable, though it is typically a more expensive option when compared to traditional lighting. That cost is offset by the fact LED lights last longer and, perhaps most significantly for commercial users like the airport, consume far less energy.

According to Horizon Solutions – Energy Services, which has been contracted to install the new lighting, the project will result in the annual removal from the atmosphere of 930,286 pound of carbon dioxide, more than 1.5 million grams of sulfur dioxide and more than 3.5 million grams of nitrogen oxides. The results are equivalent to removing 88 cars from the road every year and saving 56,381 gallons of gasoline annually, according to the study.

The total cost for the project is about $350,000 and National Grid will be providing $90,000 of that. Once the lights are completed installed, the annual electric cost savings will be about $66,000, based on 2013 utility rates. The new lighting will have completely paid for itself after five years, officials said.

Albany Airport Spokesperson Doug Myers said the Authority is planning on completely relighting the rest of the terminal, but first wants to monitor this first step to make sure the savings from the new bulbs add up.

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