Green Innovations

Developing renewable and clean technology companies in New York

Sunday, February 21, 2010

EPA renewable energy installation in Syracuse cited as ARRA success

One year ago this week, President Obama signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.  In New York State, where EPA’s Recovery Act funding has spurred cleanups of toxic waste sites and leaking petroleum storage tanks, cleaner water, and projects to reduce air pollution from diesel engines, a project in Syracuse was highlighted this week as a success. EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Peter S. Silva visited a drinking water system in Syracuse that will soon be partially powered by wind and hydroelectric energy thanks to Recovery Act funding.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is providing more than $560 million for environmental cleanups and upgrades across New York State.  Recovery Act funding is paying for:
  • nearly $432 million in wastewater improvements;
  • about $87 million for drinking water projects;
  • well over $15 million in clean diesel projects;
  • almost $15 million for Superfund cleanups;
  • more than $9 million to address leaking underground storage tanks;
  • $2.5 million for brownfields assessments and cleanups.
More than $40 million of the wastewater and drinking water funds were dedicated to projects that derive power from clean renewable sources like wind, solar and hydropower and improve energy efficiency. The New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation (EFC) , a public benefit corporation, oversees the distribution and implementation of the state’s wastewater and drinking water funding.

Assistant Administrator Silva, EPA Deputy Regional Administrator George Pavlou and EFC President and CEO Matthew J. Driscoll visited the Westcott Reservoir in Syracuse, which received two Recovery Act grants to install solar and hydroelectric systems as a way to offset the reservoir’s demand for energy. The City of Syracuse is installing a solar power system at the reservoir that will provide some 56,000 kilowatt hours of renewable power per year to help power the city's drinking water system. Recovery Act funding in the amount of $487,273 is paying for most of the $536,000 project. The city is also constructing a 50 kilowatt microturbine hydropower system at the Westcott Reservoir, which will generate approximately 450,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year to help offset the energy demands of the water system. The project will cost $350,000, with $315,000 coming from the Recovery Act.

For more information on the Westcott Reservoir project and other Recovery Act wastewater and drinking water infrastructure projects in New York, visit

For more about EPA's implementation of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, visit, and for information on the implementation in New York, visit