HOBOKEN - Hoboken Director of Environmental Services John Pope asked PSE&G, an energy company in New Jersey, last week to place a moratorium on the new streetlights they have been installing in the mile-square city. The older lights, which used mercury vapor as a light source, are being replaced in response to a new federal energy code. It is happening in other towns besides Hoboken, as well. The moratorium came after resident, current Planning Board member Hank Forrest noticed that the energy company has been replacing the old “cobra-head” lights in Hoboken with new, whiter lights, particularly on side streets. However, Forrest did some research and determined that -- from what he could tell -- the new lights do not brighten as much of the street as the older lights, so Hoboken is not, in his opinion, getting a fair one-to-one replacement.
On Monday, the City Council’s Public Safety Committee met and discussed the matter. Officials including Pope and council members Ravi Bhalla and Michael Lenz promised to look into the issue. Pope said Friday that he has asked PSE&G for a moratorium, and also asked them to provide more data about the new lights.