NYC installs solar on city-owned buildings

Clare Saxon Ghauri
15 April 2012

NEW YORK: Mayor Bloomberg shows a continued commitment to solar in New York City with his announcement that the city has tripled its generation of the low carbon energy.

Mayor Bloomberg announced that the city has tripled its production of solar energy to 648 kilowatts by installing PV panels on ten city-owned buildings. The city’s new energy source will reduce the buildings’ running costs and cut 205 metric tons of carbon emissions.

Speaking at the opening of Efficiency 2.0, a start-up which rewards customers for saving energy, the Mayor said: “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. We’re also committed to tapping into the power of the private sector and with the success of start-ups like Efficiency 2.0, we are making our city the place to be for innovation.”

Elaborating on the city’s solar initiative, Cas Holloway, Deputy Mayor for Operations said: “Making renewable energy investments viable in New York City is essential to ensure that our supply remains reliable, clean, and affordable. 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.”

Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert K. Steel spotlighted the economic benefits of the solar installations. He said: “Today’s announcement highlights the growing synergy between sustainability, economic development and job creation. Entrepreneurs are beginning to capitalize on the growing market opportunities in New York City that are driven by Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC initiatives.”

Commenting on the opportunity that the city’s latest clean energy innovation market has opened up, Tom Scaramellino, Founder and CEO, Efficiency 2.0, added: “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. 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.”

Further highlighting New York City’s support of low carbon innovation, the Mayor also announced the summer launch of a ‘green hackathon’, called Reinvent Green. The goal of Reinvent Green is to encourage technical-minded New Yorkers to develop digital tools and apps focused on improving urban sustainability. The initiative is hosted by PlaNYC, the Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications and NYC Digital.

Since launching PlaNYC, New York City has completed 143 energy retrofits and clean energy installations, and it has 99 projects underway. Combined, the projects are expected to reduce the city’s energy costs by an estimated $32 million a year.

This year, Climate Week NYC will yet again take place in the same week that hundreds of government, business and thought leaders converge on New York City for the United Nations General Assembly meeting, on September 24-30, 2012. Climate Week NYC is an annual global summit that aims to mobilize climate action through a week-long agenda packed with diverse public-facing events and high-level meetings. See what's happening this year at

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