Home Housing & Development Mayor Bloomberg Announces Over 100 PlaNYC Energy Efficiency Retrofit Projects Have Been...

Mayor Bloomberg Announces Over 100 PlaNYC Energy Efficiency Retrofit Projects Have Been Launched or Completed in City-Owned Buildings

New York, NY – December 2, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Deputy Mayor for Operations Edward Skyler and Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Martha K. Hirst today announced that 104 projects to reduce energy use and meet the emissions reduction goals of PlaNYC are under construction or completed. The Mayor also announced that, in conjunction with New York  City Global Partners, he will travel to Copenhagen to attend the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen, or COP 15, to share with the world New York City’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions from buildings. The PlaNYC program that the Mayor will discuss in Copenhagen has allowed the City to upgrade the lighting, boilers, chillers, and heating and cooling systems in schools, sanitation garages, police precincts, and cultural, recreational and other facilities. Of the 104 projects, 62 are completed and 42 are in construction. The 62 completed projects cost $16 million and will eliminate an estimated 8,600 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually, and will pay for themselves within seven years by saving the City $2.3 million a year in reduced electricity, natural gas and oil bills. An additional 118 projects, currently in the pipeline, will save the City an additional $20 million a year and reduce emissions by an estimated 85,000 metric tons of CO2.

PlaNYC set the ambitious but achievable goal of reducing City government’s emissions by 30 percent by 2017,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “Seventy-five percent of our overall carbon emissions come from buildings, older buildings are a major source of those emissions, and we have reduced them with energy-saving retrofits that will pay for themselves. In Copenhagen, I look forward to learning what other world cities are doing to reduce emissions, and also letting them know about the successes we have had with our PlaNYC projects.”

“Instead of talking about saving energy and hoping that emissions would go down, we went out and did something about it,” said Deputy Mayor Skyler. “Since we laid out our plan last July, we have been hard at work finishing projects that are making City operations more sustainable and energy-efficient.”

“Our data-driven approach will help us make smart decisions about how to invest the City’s money in energy-saving projects,” said Commissioner Hirst. “Our success to date shows the City is on track to achieve the goals of PlaNYC.”

In PlaNYC, Mayor Bloomberg set the ambitious goal of reducing the greenhouse gas emissions of City government buildings and operations by 30 percent by 2017.  In October 2007, the Mayor issued Executive Order 109, which committed 10 percent of the City’s energy budget – $80 million to $100 million a year – towards achieving the greenhouse emissions goal. The executive order also created the Energy Conservation Steering Committee, headed by Deputy Mayor Skyler, which in July 2008 laid the blueprint for achieving the emissions goal by releasing The Long-Term Plan to Reduce Energy Consumption and Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Municipal Buildings and Operations.  This long-term plan lays out a strategy to achieve a reduction of 1.68 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalents (CO2e) annually by 2017.

$87 Million in Federal Stimulus Funds Will Support Efficiency Projects

The implementation of the long-term plan will require an estimated $2.3 billion investment over nine years, of which over $900 million has already been committed by the City. Last month, the City received an additional $87 million of Federal stimulus money through funding opportunities including the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) and State Energy Program (SEP).

The Federal block grant funds will support the City’s initiatives to conduct building energy audits, retrofit and retro-commission buildings with new technologies, and implement an operations and maintenance strategy. In addition, Federal funding will support other efforts such as:

  • Clean Distributed Generation: feasibility assessments and engineering studies to assess the potential for combined heat and power technologies that could be sited in and around the most heavily energy-consuming City facilities;
  • Boiler Fuel Catalysts: Installation of fuel catalysts and economizers at 200 schools with residual oil burning boilers to reduce fuel use;
  • Revolving Loan Fund: A pilot revolving loan program, which is part of the City’s Greener, Greater Buildings Plan, to help capital-constrained building owners access funds to invest in commercially reasonable energy efficiency retrofits.

New DCAS Division of Energy Management Will Lead PlaNYC Effort to Reduce Emissions

The retrofit projects, including retro-commissioning initiatives, that will help achieve the plan’s goals are tailored to each building, and may include energy efficient lighting and occupancy sensors; high efficiency chillers and boilers; building management systems; cooling towers; steam trap maintenance and pipe insulation; programmable thermostats; and ventilation optimization.

“Through the program to reduce emissions 30 percent by 2017, the City is continuing to lead by example,” said Rohit T. Aggarwala, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability. “DCAS’s efforts demonstrate that conducting energy audits and retro-commissioning in buildings, actions that will be required for large buildings under the City’s Greener, Greater Buildings Plan, make economic and environmental sense and are the single biggest step we can take to reduce carbon emissions.”

The long-term plan is being implemented by the new DCAS Division of Energy Management. The Division of Energy Management is centralizing the implementation of the long-term plan and leading efforts to:

  • Track building performance through a Citywide benchmarking of energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions in City-owned buildings by July 2010;
  • Conduct comprehensive energy audits to identify all the cost-effective energy conservation opportunities in a building;
  • Roll-out an operations and maintenance plan for building facility staff to implement key routine maintenance tasks that can maintain or increase the energy savings of building systems and extend their useful life;
  • Study, identify, and install appropriate metering and monitoring technologies in City buildings that will collect and analyze real-time energy use data and support improvements in operations and maintenance; and

Work with other City agencies to implement other greenhouse gas emission reductions opportunities, from improvements to fleet operations, wastewater treatment plants, new construction, and street lighting.


Stu Loeser / Jason Post   212) 788-2958Mark Daly (212) 669-7140