The Town of Islip has replaced 15,000 street lights in a number of hamlets, part of a $6.1 million New York Power Authority effort to reduce energy costs and carbon dioxide emissions.

"Upgrading light fixtures with newer, more energy efficient lighting reduces emissions through lower energy use, which means cleaner air in our communities," said Gil C. Quiniones, NYPA president and chief executive officer in a news release.

The authority estimated the energy efficiency project will save $1 million a year in energy costs and remove an estimated 2,500 tons of carbon dioxide emissions during that time, according to NYPA. The Hauppauge-based Wendel Energy Services completed the upgrade, along with Welsbach Electric, of Plainview.

The two-year renovation began in April 2012 as part of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's Build Smart NY initiative to improve energy performance in public buildings by 20 percent by 2020.

"Energy efficiency is key to cost effective living on Long Island where taxpayers eagerly need financial relief. These types of projects are crucial now and will be in the future as we continue to make Long Island a more affordable place to live," State Sen. Phil Boyle (R-Bay Shore) said in the release.

The $6.1 million was funded by NYPA, which pays total expenses up front but requires reimbursement from the town over time, according to spokesman Paul DeMichele.

Communities that received the new street lights included West Islip, Brightwaters, Bay Shore, Brentwood, Hauppauge, Sayville and Bayport.

Islip began replacing lighting fixtures during a 2008 pilot program, which was funded by a U.S. Department of Energy award. To date, the town has replaced 28,000 fixtures.

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