FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 9, 2012
MAYOR BLOOMBERG ANNOUNCES CITY HAS TRIPLED ITS PRODUCTION OF SOLAR POWER WITH NEW PANELS ON 10 BUILDINGS AND OPENS NEW OFFICES FOR TECH STARTUP, EFFICIENCY 2.0
New Energy Projects Promote PlaNYC Goals for Reduced Carbon Emissions
As New York City's Tech Scene Competes with Silicon Valley, Efficiency 2.0 Signs California Client
Mayor Announces City's First "Green" Hackathon to Take Place This Summer
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg today announced that New York City has tripled its production of solar power by completing the installation of panels on City-owned buildings across the five boroughs. The 10 projects increase the City’s total solar production to 648 kilowatts – enough to power 143 households – and will cut 205 metric tons of carbon emissions, as well as save money on annual energy costs. The Mayor also announced that the City’s first “green” hackathon, “Reinvent Green,” will launch this summer to spur the development of digital tools that empower New Yorkers to engage in sustainable practices. Mayor Bloomberg made the announcements at the opening of the new offices of Efficiency 2.0, a New York City-founded tech start-up that helps energy utilities engage with their customers to reduce energy consumption. Mayor Bloomberg was joined at the Efficiency 2.0 offices in the Flatiron district by Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Edna Wells Handy, Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability Director David Bragdon, New York City Department of Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Director of Energy Programs Michael Colgrove, New York Power Authority Director of Renewable Energy Guy Sliker and Efficiency 2.0 CEO and founder Tom Scaramellino.
“In clean tech, New York City is leading by example and the solar projects we’ve completed will generate clean, affordable energy while cutting our carbon emissions and energy costs – goals that are central to our Administration’s sustainability agenda, PlaNYC,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “We’re also committed to tapping into the power of the private sector and with the success of startups like Efficiency 2.0, we are making our city the place to be for innovation.”
“We are thrilled to announce the installation of 10 new solar photovoltaic systems throughout the City, roughly tripling the solar capacity installed on City facilities,” said Commissioner Handy. “This project was a true citywide effort and a testament to world class teamwork. We applaud the extraordinary efforts of the solar host agencies – Police, Fire, Sanitation, and Transportation – and recognize the support of our other governmental partners at the New York Power Authority, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, Department of Buildings, Fire Department, and the Public Design Commission.”
“The new solar installations are one example of this Administration’s progress toward our PlaNYC goals to reduce our carbon footprint and encourage the development of renewable energy,” said Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability Director Bragdon. “The City’s commitment to new technology, combined with the private sector’s partnership, is helping us create a more sustainable future.”
“Making renewable energy investments viable in New York City is essential to ensure that our supply remains reliable, clean, and affordable,” said Deputy Mayor for Operations Cas Holloway. “New York City is leading the way, and the installation of these solar photovoltaic systems is part of a comprehensive strategy to use the City’s assets to encourage and support the development of renewable energy sources throughout the five boroughs.”
“Today’s announcement highlights the growing synergy between sustainability, economic development and job creation,” said Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert K. Steel. “Entrepreneurs are beginning to capitalize on the growing market opportunities in New York City that are driven by Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC initiatives.”
“New York City’s clean energy community is unique in its focus on low capital intensity and high opportunity clean technology companies. Combined with unparalleled access to talent and capital, the City's commitment to clean energy makes it the best place in the world for innovative technology companies to start, grow, and succeed,” said Tom Scaramellino, founder and CEO of Efficiency 2.0. “The City has always been the home of the boldest ideas and has a long tradition of exporting innovation. We are proud to help continue that tradition by addressing society's critical energy issues.”
The 10 solar project sites have a total solar photovoltaic capacity of 428 kilowatts, tripling the City’s current production and helping reduce greenhouse gas emissions, while also creating energy cost savings. The projects were funded through American Recovery and Reinvestment Act grants distributed through the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority. The New York City Department for Citywide Administrative Services oversaw the various agencies’ projects, with the help of the New York Power Authority. The project sites include:
“Solar projects like these will provide clean, reliable energy for years to come, helping the state to meet the goals of the NY-Sun initiative under the leadership of Governor Cuomo,” said Francis J. Murray Jr., President and CEO, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). “Both New York State and the city have demonstrated a strong commitment to solar energy, and we hope to see business and residential property owners throughout the city follow the lead of these departments.”
“The New York Power Authority is proud of its long-standing partnership with New York City to improve its energy efficiency and increase clean renewable generation,” said Gil C. Quiniones, president and chief executive officer, New York Power Authority. “Starting in the early 1990s with New York State’s first large-scale solar PV system built in the Bronx, to the recent completion of eight solar arrays atop city public buildings, to our ongoing collaboration on the NYC Solar America City initiative, we are looking forward to helping build a more sustainable New York. This successful partnership also includes significant energy-saving measures to lower electricity demand and greenhouse gas emissions.”
In addition to the solar installations, the federal grants helped fund other efficiency measures. High efficiency lighting was installed on 12 sites throughout the City to cut more 917 metric tons of carbon emissions and save more than $332,000 each year. The funding also provided for the adoption of clean vehicles, which will save more than $163,000 annually and provide for reduction in fuel use and emissions. Since the launch of PlaNYC, the City has completed a total of143 energy retrofits and clean energy installations, and have another 99 projects in design and construction. Together these will reduce our energy costs an estimated $32 million a year.
“The FDNY is committed to not only making New York City a safer place to live, but a greener one as well,” said Fire Commissioner Salvatore J. Cassano. “Whether it’s using energy efficient lighting fixtures in our firehouses, or installing solar panels on our existing buildings and in our new construction, the Department is making great strides towards reaching the city’s long-range sustainability goals. The result is a more energy efficient and less expensive Fire Department, while still maintaining the best fire protection and pre-hospital medical care in the world.”
“The DSNY is pleased to have participated in this significant program that is bringing the city closer to achieving the Mayor’s bold energy reduction goals,” said Sanitation Commissioner Doherty. “Having two of our 59 district garages fitted with solar panels sets in motion our exciting plan to use the sun to power our electric cars. Also, our newest generation hybrid collection trucks and first in the nation, hybrid street sweepers have set the standard for all U.S. municipalities to follow. These heavy-duty hybrids perform at the same standards as their non-hybrid counterparts, with the added benefit of significant reductions in Green House Gas (GHG) emissions and lower fuel consumption.”
This summer, New York City will launch “Reinvent Green,” its first “green” hackathon that will focus on sustainability and the urban environment. Hosted by PlaNYC, the Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications and NYC Digital, the two-day event invites developers and designers to use the City’s environmental open data sets to create digital tools and apps that empower New Yorkers to engage in more sustainable practices. The hackathon is part of PlaNYC’s initiatives to create a greener, greater New York. Interested participants are encouraged to visit nyc.gov and search for “reinvent green” to apply and learn more.
“Congratulations to Efficiency 2.0 on their exciting new expansion. Efficiency 2.0 is a great example of merging digital and green objectives, and in that vein today we are excited to announce the City’s first-ever green hackathon this summer,” said Chief Digital Officer Rachel Sterne. “The Reinvent Green hackathon will help us meet the Mayor's sustainability goals through innovative, digital approaches that will make our City even greener and greater.”
Through its Personal Energy Efficiency Rewards Program, Efficiency 2.0 rewards utility customers for saving energy. Using customer engagement software, and national and local valuable rewards opportunities, Efficiency 2.0 delivers energy savings and other benefits, and has generated substantially higher savings at a significantly more cost-effective rate than competitive programs. Efficiency 2.0’s programs with leading U.S. utilities will save energy equivalent to removing about 3,000 Manhattan apartments, an entire 500,000 square foot commercial building, or about 25 million pounds of CO2 reductions. Efficiency 2.0 was founded in New York City in 2009. It currently employs 30 people and has plans to double its workforce this year.
Today Efficiency 2.0 announced the launch of the Home Energy Advisor and the Business Energy Advisor, comprehensive customer engagement and integrated demand-side management software for Southern California Edison. The Home Energy Advisor and Business Energy Advisor are first-of-their-kind tools that demonstrate utilities’ commitment to helping customers better manage energy costs, particularly during tough economic times. The Home Energy Advisor and Business Energy Advisor tools leverage more than 500 million energy data points to identify targeted energy improvements for SCE customers based on their unique energy profiles. The tools then present energy savings recommendations to customers, delivering suggestions on efficiency upgrades and solar power installations in an engaging format.
Stu Loeser/Lauren Passalacqua (212) 788-2958
Julianne Cho (Department of Citywide Administrative Services)
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