The use of green energy is making its way to the transport industry in Seychelles, not only through “greener” electric vehicles gaining popularity but also with road infrastructure moving in a similar direction.
While still far off from many concepts that various other nations are aspiring towards, Seychelles will in the coming years be looking to light its streets with more energy friendly bulbs, including LED and solar powered lights, and the work has already started.
This was announced by the CEO of the Seychelles Land Transport Agency (SLTA), Parinda Herath, in a recent interview with SNA.
“At the moment, we are only putting up solar lights in areas where there are no possibilities for connection to electricity, but what we want is to eventually have mostly solar lights around Mahe, in areas where it is suitable,” said Herath.
He added that this will also help reduce the running cost of these lights and reduce the STLA’s expenditure.
Herath explained that the SLTA usually has an annual budget to install 15-20 new street lights per district, while they also do maintenance works on existing lights.
However, he added that during the recent public meetings done by Seychelles’ President Wavel Ramkalawan, the need for more street lights was highlighted and consequently an additional budget was given to STLA to meet those demands.
“Therefore, with additional resources this year, our target is to put up at least 50 new lights in each district, and I am happy to say that we are on target, whereby early next year, all districts are expected to have their new lights at convenient locations,” added Herath.
The SLTA chief added that they are working on a plan to improve the lighting around the streets of the capital Victoria, although he has explained that since the electricity cables are underground, it is proving to be a difficult task.
SLTA spends about SCR7-8 million ($561,000-$641,000) per year for the installation of the lights along with maintenance of existing works.
The SLTA, which is responsible for the transport related infrastructure in the country, is also looking at ways to be more sustainable in the road resurfacing works, where there are plans to bring in the necessary equipment to be able to recycle asphalt.
“We have already launched a tender for equipment and a milling machine is among the equipment, which we need to be able to re-use the asphalt currently on the roads,” added Herath, who did explain however, that using the milling machine will come with some problems however, especially in areas where there are no alternative roads.
“It is a long process, as the machine will have to remove the surface completely in order to be recycled into new asphalt, which will take a few days, but until then, the road will have to be closed, which is an issue we must think about,” Herath explained.
Meanwhile, Herath also spoke of other ongoing projects currently being undertaken, where the new lane leading to the Mont Fleuri Secondary School is close to completion, along the lane leading to the International School Seychelles, which will help ease traffic congestion in those areas, which has been a major concern in recent years.
Other works include the widening of the road leading to Ile Du Port, with additional lanes also being added there, again with the aim of reducing the amount of traffic congestion, especially during the peak hours of the day, namely around eight in the morning, noon, and four in the afternoon.
Source: Seychelles News Agency