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EU helps Ukraine weather Russian attacks on grid with LED bulbs

#helps #Ukraine #weather #Russian #attacks #grid #LED #bulbs

Ukraine said Friday it had started replacing millions of regular light bulbs with energy-saving LED lamps as part of an EU-funded project to help with energy shortages caused by Russian strikes.

For months Moscow has systematically targeted Ukraine’s energy grid, leaving millions in the dark and cold in the middle of winter.

The EU said in December it would fund the purchase of 30 million LED light bulbs for Ukraine worth 30 million euros ($33 million) to help deal with the large-scale blackouts.

“The programme to replace old light bulbs with energy-saving LED bulbs started this week,” Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmygal said on Twitter.

He also thanked European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, who is in Kyiv for an EU-Ukraine summit also attended by EU chief Charles Michel.

Ukrainians can swap five old light bulbs for five LED bulbs at post offices.

On Friday, at Kyiv’s main post office lit by four imposing chandeliers Ukrainians huddled at counter 18, where the exchange took place.

A post office employee said “a lot of people” come to exchange bulbs every day.

“Everyone says this is a very good idea,” said the worker who wore a yellow and black vest. 

Olena, who came to exchange her bulbs, praised the programme as a “good initiative for Ukraine” and pointed to “very difficult conditions”.

“We understand that we have to, we must do it for ourselves, for the country,” said the 50-year-old.

More than 750,000 light bulbs have been replaced in three days and six million LEDs will be sent to Ukrainian regions next week, said Shmygal.

Von der Leyen announced that the EU would supply 35 million LEDs to Ukraine, five million more than initially promised. 

She said in December the LED bulbs would save Ukraine “one gigawatt” of electricity, equivalent to “the annual output of a nuclear plant”.

“In times of darkness, we stand with our Ukrainian friends,” she added.

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#helps #Ukraine #weather #Russian #attacks #grid #LED #bulbs

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