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Oman launches energy-saving drive

The sultanate is saving $6mn a year by switching to LED bulbs

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About 300,000 incandescent bulbs and lamps will be replaced with LED alternatives
About 300,000 incandescent bulbs and lamps will be replaced with LED alternatives

Petroleum Development Oman is saving US $6mn a year by switching its lighting system to one which is more environmentally friendly.

The conversion from regular incandescent lights to Light Emitting Diode (LED) bulbs is the biggest of its type in Oman. It is taking place over the next two years and is being carried out by the company's Power System Department.

About 300,000 incandescent bulbs and lamps will be replaced with LED alternatives which consume up to 70 per cent less energy. The new bulbs also have a longer average life of 100,000 hours - 10 times that of a regular light - and don't contain any unsafe substances, which can be found in conventional ones, such as mercury.

Infrastructure Power System Department manager Mohammed al Aghbari said: "The use of traditional lighting products is always associated with enormous maintenance costs and requires time and labour because they need to be replaced so frequently. However, LED lights, besides their efficient energy consumption, also have the benefit of lasting longer and being cost effective. This greener approach is all part of meeting the challenge of maintaining power stability and reliability with less consumption and cost."

The switchover has started at the company's Mina Al Fahal estate and the field locations should be completed by 2015 with the aim of recovering the initial outlay on the LED replacements through power savings by then. The energy saving means less gas is needed to produce electricity for PDO's lighting requirements and so the annual gas production bill for this will fall more than 65 per cent.

In the coming years, as more PDO facilities are built and significant projects are launched, the projected savings are targeted to rise from US $6mn to US $8mn a year. Head of power systems operations and Maintenance Humaid al Amri said: "This move is in line with the company's strategy to minimise operating costs and improve energy efficiency, thereby benefitting the environment, shareholders and the whole of Oman."

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