Pull the plug

PUBLISHED: 11:02 28 December 2006 | UPDATED: 10:05 31 May 2010

ESSEX County Council s (ECC) proposal to switch off some of its lights at midnight has caused much comment in your paper. Its extraordinary that the ruling Lib Dem party on Uttlesford District Council saw it as a political rather than an environmental opp

ESSEX County Council's (ECC) proposal to switch off some of its lights at midnight has caused much comment in your paper.

Its extraordinary that the ruling Lib Dem party on Uttlesford District Council saw it as a political rather than an environmental opportunity - this from the group who screamed environment at us over their wheelie bin instruction. Street lights in Essex produce 19,000 tons of CO2 emissions and cost £3.8m pa - no-one can ignore that.

ECC have proposed a trial and consulted with Councils, the police and emergency services. Rather than respond to consultation, LibDem Councillors rushed around with protest leaflets in an effort to score political points.

However, Cllrs Chambers and Ketteridge and myself spoke to Rodney Bass, the cabinet member at ECC for highways who accepted our argument that the trial in Saffron Walden should take account of its status as the largest town in Uttlesford.

Consequently a number of Saffron Walden's lights will be especially adapted to go off at 1am (as opposed to the original proposal of midnight) and further consideration will be given to which lights will be turned off and how many.

I am sure there will be scope for further discussion around the trial period but for now the consultation outcome does seem to balance environmental needs in a particular area. Local comment should continue to be made to Saffron Walden County Cllr Robert Chambers and for those outside Saffron Walden contact your county council - they are listening.

Howard Rolfe

Great Chesterford

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