The company, which spends £300k a year on lighting costs and electrical maintenance, could save £260k annually after replacing its incandescent bulbs with Light-Emitting Diode (LED) counterparts.

Petrol forecourt lighting is often required 24 hours a day for practical and safety reasons and with more than 4,000 incandescent bulbs to power, MRH had a high energy consumption bill.

npower, who carried out the installations in May 2012 and completed them in August, estimates the project will pay back its initial cost within two to three years.

MRH managing director John Lynn said: “When we began looking at the different energy-saving options available, we realised that with more than 350 sites, there was the potential to make significant reductions. The fact we’re looking at savings of nearly 90% is amazing and demonstrates how relatively easy it is to implement simple changes which can make a big difference.

npower has also installed motion-detection video sensors which enable the LED lights to be dimmed when full-power is not required.

MRH claim that LED has numerous advantages over conventional incandescent bulbs. According to the firm, It is ideal for petrol station canopies because it is durable and can work in any climate condition due to its tight base. While it is also far more efficient, the lights remaining intact for between 50,000 to 100,000 hours compared with incandescent bulbs which last for around 1,000 hours.

The company hope that carbon reductions from using LEDs can help it to meet its reduction targets and demands of legislation such as the Carbon Reduction Commitment Energy Efficiency Scheme (CRC).

A report published by Global Business Intelligence (GBI) yesterday in New York claimed that as incandescent and halogen lamps are phased out and replaced with greener alternatives, LEDs look likely to emerge as a key growth sector in Europe.

It noted that while the initial cost of LED lighting is high, the overall cost of ownership is lower than incandescent lamps and that “technological advancements along with growing consumer awareness could lead to a potential boom in the market.”

Conor McGlone

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