Eight Sustainability Projects Emphasize Strategies to Accelerate Community Revitalization
New York – May 29, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) today announced the launch of eight projects throughout the North Country that will serve as innovative models that decrease energy costs, create jobs, reduce waste or generate clean energy power. The projects align with Governor Cuomo’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV), the State’s comprehensive energy strategy to build a next generation energy system that is clean, resilient and affordable for all New Yorkers.
The projects are part of the Cleaner, Greener Communities program, a major statewide initiative encouraging communities to incorporate sustainability goals and principles into local decision-making, and then form partnerships to transform these goals into economic development projects. The program, administered by NYSERDA, also empowers communities to take action, providing technical resources and decision-making tools on land use, housing, transportation, energy, economic development and environmental practices, resulting in a more vibrant and prosperous New York State.
“These eight creative projects in the North Country will bring increased sustainability and energy efficiency to the region,” said John B. Rhodes, President and CEO, NYSERDA. “They are great examples of ways communities, especially in rural regions, can participate in the State’s Reforming the Energy Vision under Governor Cuomo.”
The projects, all of which fall under the North Country Multi-County Implementation Project, will be overseen by the Adirondack North Country Association (ANCA) and Essex County.
The projects include:
Rivermede Farm in Keene Valley will install a new solar-thermal greenhouse heating system, allowing the farm to produce food year-round and hire several new employees.
The Lake Placid area will install a small-scale waste bio-digester that converts food waste to biogas used to generate electricity. Schools, restaurants and businesses in the region will divert 900 tons of food waste from the landfill annually, saving the town $68,000 a year and creating enough power for 27 homes.
The Town of Stockholm will convert the Town Garage heating system from oil to high-efficiency, low-emission wood pellet biomass.
The iconic Hotel Saranac in Saranac Lake will install a variety of energy-efficiency improvements as well as two electric vehicle charging stations.
The Village of Saranac Lake is also installing new control technology at its hydroelectric facility, saving the town thousands of dollars in annual energy costs.
The Northern Forest Center will work with communities across the North Country to promote conversions to high-efficiency, low-emission wood pellet biomass.
The Village of Lyons Falls has upgraded its sidewalks and paths, promoting pedestrian and bicycle access.
The North Country School in Lake Placid will build a high-flow drum composter, reducing food waste and providing a replicable model for similarly sized institutions.
“Our Cleaner, Greener plan has won national recognition and now is leading to tangible progress,” said Garry Douglas, President of the North Country Chamber of Commerce and Co-Chair of the North Country Regional Economic Development Council (REDC). “Most notable is the regional collaboration these projects represent, each involving multiple locations in more than one county. This is the sort of cooperative approach across old lines that is bringing success to the North Country. Our thanks go out to Governor Cuomo for his continued commitment to our region, and to all of the applicants and sites for their collaboration.”
Anthony G. Collins, President of Clarkson University and Co-Chair of the North Country REDC, said, “Based on the priorities identified in the North Country’s Cleaner, Greener Communities Plan, these recent awards illustrate the region-wide commitment to sustainability and the broad public support of the Council’s vision to create the greenest and most self-reliant energy economy in the State.”
Katie Liendecker, Mayor of Lyons Falls, said, “This funding will be extremely important to not only the pedestrians and bikers of the Village of Lyons Falls but to the many tourists who will be visiting our beautiful North Country and staying at our unique Edge Hotel.”
Kate Fish, Executive Director of ANCA said, “It was amazing to see the level of collaboration with the eight different projects, with the County and with NYSERDA, to get these projects in place. Over 250 people participated in the development of the North Country Sustainability Plan. Some of the projects identified in that Plan are able to be implemented already due to this Cleaner, Greener Communities support from NYSERDA.”
Maura Adams, Program Director, Northern Forest Center, said, “The Northern Forest Center is delighted to receive CGC funding, which significantly advances our biomass heating efforts in northern New York in addition to our biomass heating advocacy across northern Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.”
Mike Mascarenas, Director of Essex County Community Resources, said, “Essex County is very pleased to be able to assist the Council in achieving its goal of becoming the greenest economy in the State. Our planning process developed innovative projects that are utilizing green technology to help reduce our carbon footprint. The North Country region has been very proactive in making our area a more desirable place to live, work and play.”
Fred Roedel, owner of the Hotel Saranac, said, “We are excited about how the guests and the community of the Hotel Saranac will benefit from this program through the installation of the first Electric Vehicle charging station in the area in our parking lot, the low-flow water fixtures throughout the building and more energy efficient construction in our soon-to-be renovated hotel.”
Roby Politi, Town Supervisor, North Elba, said, “Lake Placid is proud of its commitment to environmental preservation. We are also thankful to volunteer Tammy Morgan and the Adirondack North Country Association for their vigorous efforts to secure funding for a new anaerobic digester. This important technology will divert restaurant and community food wastes from our landfill to a source of renewable energy and growing composites for agricultural uses. Another step to a better living environment.”
Robin McClellan, Coordinator for the Stockholm wood pellet project, said, “A SUNY Canton student-led analysis of the community’s buildings led to this project to install a wood pellet biomass heating system in the Stockholm town garage, which will save the town 2,000 gallons a year of fuel oil costs.”
Rivermede Farm’s Rob Hastings said, “Of all the green innovations that the farm has done so far, the installation of solar thermal systems in our four greenhouses will make the most difference in allowing the farm to produce food year round in the cold northern part of the state, and will supply year-round full-time employment for the first time.”
Village of Saranac Lake Community Development Director Jeremy Evans said, “The community will benefit from a new programmable logic control (PLC) at the Village’s hydroelectric turbine at the Lake Flower Dam, resulting in more efficient and precise operation with the goal of generating more revenue and renewable electricity.”
Cleaner, Greener Communities is funded through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), the nation’s first market-based regulatory program in the United States to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. RGGI is a cooperative effort among the states of Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont to cap and reduce CO2 emissions from the power sector.
The REDC initiative is a key component of Governor Cuomo’s transformative approach to State investment and economic development. The councils are public-private partnerships composed of local experts and stakeholders from business, academia, local government, and non-governmental organizations. The Regional Councils have redefined the way New York invests in jobs and economic growth by putting in place a community-based, bottom up approach and establishing a competitive process for State resources. After three rounds of the REDC process, over $2 billion has been awarded to more than 2,200 job creation and community development projects consistent with each region’s strategic plans, supporting the creation or retention of more than 130,000 jobs. For more information on the Regional Councils, please visit regionalcouncils.ny.gov.
Under Governor Cuomo’s strategic initiative Reforming the Energy Vision, (REV) New York State spurs clean energy innovation, brings in new investments, improves consumer choice while protecting the environment and energizing New York’s economy. By unleashing innovation, overcoming markets barriers and empowering communities, New York is pioneering a new statewide approach, giving customers greater opportunities for energy savings, local power generation, and enhanced reliability. New Yorkers will benefit by access to a safe, clean and affordable energy infrastructure that creates jobs and provides economic development.
NYSERDA, a public benefit corporation, offers objective information and analysis, innovative programs, technical expertise, and funding to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency, save money, use renewable energy, and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. NYSERDA professionals work to protect the environment and create clean-energy jobs. NYSERDA has been developing partnerships to advance innovative energy solutions in New York State since 1975. To learn more about NYSERDA’s programs and funding opportunities, visit nyserda.ny.gov or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or Instagram.
Alan Wechsler, Communications Specialist
Phone : 518-862-1090, Ext. 3561
Email : alan.wechsler (at) nyserda.ny (dot) gov