Onnaing. Why the mayor decided to turn off public lighting at night

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Since September 1, the streets of the town are no longer lit from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. Mayor Xavier Jouanin highlights “an eco-responsible approach”.

« In Onnaing, we no longer want to sleep with the light on “. Since last September 1, the streets of the town are no longer lit from 11 p.m. until 5 a.m. This choice, the mayor Xavier Jouanin assumes. He had announced it – in particular in his program which allowed him to be re-elected last March – and it also allows the city of Onnaing to don the costume of pioneer in the matter. Indeed, in the Valencian crown, Onnaing is for the moment the only municipality to have made the decision to press the switch for the night. A courageous decision, insofar as it greatly shakes up habits.

“Our approach is eco-responsible”
« Our approach is eco-responsible“, Explains Xavier Jouanin who had undertaken to do Onnaing“ a greener city »During the last municipal elections. Gold, ” in communities, we cannot talk about ecology if we do not tackle public lighting“, Estimates the mayor who, like many of his counterparts, currently has to deal with a public lighting system (of 1575 light points) which has taken a bit of old age and which, necessarily, consumes a lot (141 Watts per lamp, almost triple the latest generation LED lamps). At the heart of the discussions? ” Our energy consumption and our carbon footprint, which we want to reduce as much as possible“. We will have to get used to it: ” in Onnaing, it’s not Versailles or rather, it’s no longer Versailles!“, Smiles a Xavier Jouanin who readily appears as an anti-waste mayor. ” Previously, one could understand. There was a factory that operated day and night, people did not always have the car, came home on foot and therefore needed the light. Today, except for two or three people, these lights are not used much“, Continues the one who does not hesitate to put forward” general interest“. And then, it’s not like ” everything was off from 8:30 p.m.“. For Xavier Jouanin, it is a political and ecological act ” concrete » : « It is not by sharing a post on social networks that we are going green« .

“We will not save money”
So of course, behind all this, some might see it as a way to save some money. Xavier Jouanin does not evade the question. ” Except that we will not save on this cutoff from 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. since at the same time, we will invest in replacing our current lamps with LED lamps.“. Xavier Jouanin has already done the accounts: “ In all, it will cost us 1.5 million euros“. To date, 440 lamps have already been replaced by LEDs and a study of the equipment of the entire rue Jean-Jaurès with LEDs will soon be carried out. Cost of the operation? ” 120 000 euros« .

There remains the issue of security. ” 80% of thefts and assaults are perpetrated in broad daylight“, Answers Xavier Jouanin. Within the town hall, we also rely on the conclusions drawn by the site territorial.fr and listed in the Official Journal. These indicate ” that in November 2017, nearly 12,000 municipalities had already implemented a partial or total switch-off of lighting in the middle of the night, with no observed increase in accidents or traffic offenses“. From last July, a first experiment was carried out by extinguishing the surroundings of the squares and city-stadiums of the town. And this, ” in order to meet the demand of local residents who suffered noise pollution due to gatherings at night“. And it turns out that this first experience ended with some success. A first assessment of this experience, now carried out throughout the municipality, will be carried out in six months. ” In any case, for the moment, the feedback is positive (…) Some inhabitants, and this is particularly the case of my grandmother, did not even realize that the lights were now off during the night“, Smiles Xavier Jouanin.

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