Green Innovations

Developing renewable and clean technology companies in New York

Friday, October 29, 2010

Former alumnus make a monumental donation to Cornell University's sustainability research center

Cornell alumnus David R. Atkinson and his wife Patricia have given Cornell University a monumental $80 Million donation for the advancement of the University's sustainability research center, marking the largest donation ever given to a University for sustainability research/faculty support as well as the largest single donation in Cornell's history.

Cornell's Center for a Sustainable Future is a three year pilot program focused on energy, the environment and economic development. The center was established with $3 million, limiting its longevity as well as the scope of what could be achieved but nonetheless received the attention of organizations such as IBM, CARE and the Environmental Defense Fund. The Donation will turn the center into a permanent research center entitled the David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future, hire new faculty and fund up to 15 sustainability projects a year. The Centers director Frank DiSalvo believes the donation has the potential of making Cornell University a world leader in sustainability research.

For more information visit

New York State experiences most successful Federal Stimulus quarter to date!

Earlier this week, Governor Paterson announced that New York State has completed the most successful Federal Stimulus quarter in state history.   Over the last quarter, a combined 41,582 jobs have been created in 22 state agencies through funding from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act(ARRA).

 Notable ARRA programs include:

The ARRA Education programs which has funded 29,5531 teaching/support positions throughout the state.

The Weatherization Assistance Program which has funded 990 jobs in retrofitting low income housing for energy efficiency.

The Community Services Block Grant which has funded 3,727 jobs in employment services.

Highway Infrastructure and Urban Transit which has funded 2,735 construction jobs.

The Child Care and Development Fund which has funded 2,319 jobs in financial services as well as child care improvement.

For more information visit

Clarkson professor recieves grant to increase the efficiency of biofuel production

In a national effort to increase biofuel production and use, Dr. Sergiy Minko, a professor of chemistry at Clarkson University in Potsdam, NY has been awarded $201,000 from the National Science foundation to develop cost reduction technology for the production of such fuels. Dr. Minko will work with two professors from South Dakota, who have been awarded an additional $309,000, to make cellulose enzyme extraction more cost efficient.

The professors have identified the problem to be in discarding the enzymes after use and plan on developing a process to recycle the enzymes for further use. Such a process has the potential to reduce the price of biofuels to a point where they are in direct competition with traditional fossil fuels.

The funding comes from the Obama administration's goal to produce more than 30 billion gallons of biofuels in the next decade.

For more information visit

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Syracuse granted federal funding for high speed rail improvements

In preparation for Upstate New York's high speed rail line, which will run from Buffalo to Albany, the Syracuse rail station has been granted $18 million dollars from the federal government to make improvements necessary for the shift. Such improvements include a new low-level/high-level platform, an elevator and a pedestrian bridge at William F. Walsh Regional Transportation Center; allowing freight trains to completely bypass the station on separate tracks. Improvements will also be made at the CSX DeWitt yards to reduce passenger/freight train congestion.

The new rail has goals of increasing speeds from 79 mph to 110 mph in the short term and eventually to 150 mph, shaving significant time off of the current route. Upstate New York is one of 11 high speed rail corridors nationwide established by the federal government.

For more information refer to the Post-Standard article at

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

$153 Million allocated for the cleanup of two former GM properties in New York State

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A total of $153 Million dollars has been allocated for the cleanup of two former General Motors properties located in Salina and Massena, NY. The money comes from a monumental $773 million trust fund established by the federal government, Motors Liquidation Company (formerly GM), 14 states and the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe for the clean up of 89 former GM properties. The trust fund represents the largest of its kind in the history of The United States.

Massena will receive $120 million, the largest amount allotted to any of the properties, to demolish and remediate the soils beneath the former GM Powertrain plant. Although the money is not expected to bring immediate long term jobs to Massena, it brings much needed hope to a community devastated by last years closing of the plant. Salina will receive $33 million for the cleanup of heavy metals and PCBs left by the Inland Fisher Guide Plant which closed in 1993. The cleanup will include remediation of the surrounding soils as well as Ley Creek which empties into Onondaga Lake.

For more information refer to The Post-Standard's article at

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Solar Ivy

Sustainable Minded Interactive Technology (SMIT), a Brooklyn, NY based sustainable design company has developed Solar Ivy,  a hybrid clean energy system which questions industry norms. The Solar Ivy system is composed of a  8x10 inch "leaf" panels which combine solar photovoltaics and piezoelectrics to harness both sun and wind energy.  The panels also greatly reduce air conditioning demands by providing shade.

Dedicated to environmental sustainability, SMIT uses recycled/reclaimed materials to produce the system which resembles and behaves like natural ivy on a building's wall.

For more information visit

Friday, October 22, 2010

Exciting News from The Syracuse Technology Garden!

I am proud to introduce Haledyne, LLC as the Syracuse Technology Garden's newest tenant. Haledyne is commercializing an airflow device that employs ultraviolet light to destroy bacteria and viruses instead. The device is an incredible breakthrough for hospitals and other health care facilities as current airborne bacteria control methods are extremely energy intensive as they involve the cycling of a large amount of air. The company is working with St. Josephs Hospital in Syracuse to install 12 units in their intensive care unit. At the Tech Garden the company will employ anywhere from 4 to 12 employees but plans to expand to 100 after 5 years in Syracuse.

Haledyne’s technology was borne out of a Cooperative Research & Development Agreement (CRADA) between the company, Harvard, Saint Vincent’s Medical Centers and NYSERDA. The company has since entered into academic research partnerships with Cornell,Syracuse University, Clarkson and SUNY-Fredonia. In order to identify the energy conservation components of their technology while addressing the rising issue of  hospital acquired infections Haledyne has partnered with NYSERDA and the National Grid. Haledyne is also supported by the Department of Defense in a program to create a militarized version to address HAIs domestically and abroad, in FOBs and in bioterrorism.

For more information on Haledene visit

A look at the post E-RIC New York Energy-Innovation Cluster

In August the New York Energy-Innovation Cluster (NYE-RIC) was beat out by the Greater Philadelphia Innovation Cluster (GPIC) in securing $129.7 million from the federally funded Energy Regional Innovation Cluster (E-RIC) grant. The E-RIC grant focused on clean energy growth through the collaboration of regional organizational networks. With upstate New York's strengths in research, development and manufacturing and downstate's access to international markets, investment and media for commercialization, New York was undoubtedly a strong contender.

So, is New York's Energy-Innovation Cluster disintegrating after the loss? Not in the least bit! A recent article in The Site Selection Energy Report shows that New York is moving ahead with great stamina. E-RIC helped establish valuable upstate-downstate relationships between a network of research institutions, local/state agencies and training/business centers which will be vital to the future success of New York's growing Clean Energy Economy. With such networks the City University of New York (CUNY) was recently able to secure $15 million in public funding to design a cutting edge commercialization center.  With unprecedented Clean Tech growth in New York State prior to the upstate-downstate co-operation, New York has a bright, clean future ahead.

To view the article in The Site Selection Energy Report visit

Transmission Developers Incorporated seek support for proposed underwater power line

Transmission Developers Incorporated are trying to rile support for their proposed underwater power line spanning 350 miles from Canada to New York City via Lake Champlain and the Hudson River. The project, entitled Champlain Hudson Power Express, would help New York State meets its renewable energy goals by transmitting 1,000 megawatts of Hydroelectric and Wind energy from Canada to the grid in Westchester County.

Five public hearings have been scheduled by the New York State Public Service Commission, to determine the public level of support. Hearings are set to take place in Yonkers, Kingston, Schenectady, Whitehall and Plattsburgh.

For more information on the project visit
For a schedule of public hearings visit

Advanced Energy Conference to showcase New York's clean energy economy

On November 8-9 those responsible for New York State's success as a national leader in clean technology will take center stage at Stony Brook University's 4th annual Advanced Energy Conference. The conference, which is being held at the Hilton New York in New York City, will feature innovations and success stories from more than 400 clean energy businesses and organizations throughout the State as well as the policies/resources that have made such feats possible. Presentations will be given by clean technology experts on a myriad of topics including: innovation/entrepreneurship, energy storage, pathways towards a low-carbon society, climate change impacts/strategies for adaptation, utility scale geothermal power, advanced lighting systems and green building technology systems.

We are proud to announce that The Clean Tech Center will be showcased at the conference along with NYSERDA's clean energy incubators, so come, introduce yourself and learn about New York's clean energy economy!

For more information visit

Friday, October 15, 2010

Governor David Paterson collaborates with Empire State Development to launch New York First

Governor David Paterson and Empire State Development have announced the launch of new website, New York First, directed towards New York State companies and those interested in relocating. As time is money in the business world, New York First makes it quick and easy to learn about state incentives offered by a wide array of state agencies.  The website also serves as a clearinghouse of Information for businesses interested in relocating to the state. New York first also features an impressive "experts on demand" guarantees the return of any email or phone call by an Empire State Development staff member within 24 hours.

New York First's web address is

New York ranked as the 4th most energy efficient state in the nation

The American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) has released its 4th annual State Energy Efficiency Scorecard which ranks each state in terms of its energy efficiency policies, programs, transportation policies, building energy codes, combined heat/power and appliance efficiency standards. The top 5 states included California, Massachusetts, Oregon, New York and Vermont.

Despite congresses failure to pass significant energy/climate legislation, the report shows strong evidence that states are taking it upon themselves to become more energy efficient. Such evidence includes a significant increase for energy efficiency in state budgets and the doubling of states that have made significant progress towards adopting or have already adopted energy-saving building codes/ energy efficiency resource standards.

For more information on the report visit

The Empire State Building installs state of the art super-insulating glass units

Serious Materials, a California based company that specializes in re-fabricating glass to make super-insulating glass units (IGU's) was contracted by Johnson Controls to refurbish 6,514 windows of the Empire State Building. Serious Materials set up shop within the iconic building where they fabricated the IGU's using 96% of the already existing glass/frames. The IGU's have four times greater thermal efficiency than the previous dual pane windows and will reduce solar heat gain by 50%. Serious Material's process of re-fabricating windows allows for their products to cost 3.5 times less than new IGU's.

The project is expected to cut the Empire State Building's annual energy costs by $400,000 and is one of many efficiency measures in it's sustainability program. The program has a goal of a 38% decrease in energy consumption by 2025. Such a decrease will save $4.4 million in annual energy costs and 105,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

Serious Materials CEO Kevin Surace is originally from Syracuse and studied engineering at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

For more information on Serious Materials visit
For more information on the Empire State Buildings sustainability program visit

Good news for Taylor Biomass Energy's Montgomery Project

Taylor Biomass Energy of Montgomery, New York has received approval for a $100 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy to build one of the nations first commercial scale biomass gasification power plant fueled by municipal solid waste. The plant is planned to be located in Montgomery and is expected to produce 20 MW of energy, enough to power roughly 27,000 homes! The company claims that the project will decrease the emissions of air pollutants, including greenhouse gases by approximately 70 tons, save millions of tons of waste from going into landfills and significantly reduce truck emissions due to a decrease in the transport of waste.

With the companies first project being under construction in Canada, The Montgomery Project is anticipated to be the first of many biomass gasification projects using technology developed by Taylor Biomass Energy throughout the United States.

To learn more about Taylor Biomass Energy and The Montgomery Project visit

Friday, October 8, 2010

ICM Controls receive recognition for the energy efficiency of its North Syracuse facilities

ICM Controls, the international manufacturer of energy efficient electronic controls for the Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning industry, recently received a High-Performance Building Plaque from NYSERDA for the energy efficiency of its new North Syracuse headquarters/manufacturing facility.  The buildings were granted $265,000 in incentives by NYSERDA to feature high-performance windows, lighting systems, an energy efficient heating and cooling system and building envelope insulation. The buildings save ICM Controls 812,000 kilowatt-hours per year, roughly equivalent to the annual energy consumption of 125 single family homes.

ICM Controls is one of twenty-nine plaque recipients in New York State that have constructed buildings designed to perform at least 30% above the New York State Energy Conservation Construction Code.

For more information on ICM Controls visit
For information about NYSERDA incentives/awards visit

New York's Great Appliance Swap Out returns!

New York's Great Appliance Swap Out, which was wait-listed in June is back in operation. The Swap Out is a popular appliance rebate program that gives rebates to any citizen replacing their old appliance with a new energy efficient unit. The program, which originated with $16 million in federal-funding, currently has $3,752,775 and will run until funds are exhausted.

Consumers interested in participating in the program should visit  or call 877-NY-SMART immediately after purchasing the product to reserve their rebates, additional paper work is required and must be submitted within 14 days of the reservation.  Further funding is available to those who recycle their outdated appliances.

For more information on The Great Appliance Swap Out, including rebate values visit

Thursday, October 7, 2010

New study shows that New York State is ready for more wind power

The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) has recently released a report entitled Growing Wind: NYISO Wind Generation Study, which examines New York's capability to handle an increase from 1,265 to 8,000 megawatts of wind energy by 2018.  The study has found that with investments in transmission upgrades and regulation services New York is capable of addressing any operational requirements associated with the integration of wind generation.

The findings come as good news as NYISO currently has more than 7,000 megawatts of proposed wind projects to be connected to the grid, putting New York State well on track of its 2015 goal of having 30% of electricity supplied by renewable resources.

For more information visit

A roadmap for large scale biomass employment in the Northeast

The Northeast Biomass Thermal Working Group has released comprehensive plan entitled Heating the Northeast with Renewable Biomass: A Bold Vision for 2025, which provides a clear path towards the replacement of 25% of the Northeast's non-renewable heating fuels with biomass by the year 2025. With a total consumption rate of 5.5 billion gallons of heating oil a year in the Northeast, a 25% reduction would represent a savings of approximately 1.38 billion gallons of oil. Not only will such a reduction significantly reduce the emissions of Carbon Dioxide into the atmosphere but will increase energy security and boost the economy of the Northeast by investing billions of dollars domestically.

The Northeast Biomass Thermal Working Group, a coalition of biomass thermal advocates in the Northeast is composed of the New York Biomass Energy Alliance, the Biomass Thermal Energy Council, the Maine Pellet Fuels Association, the Alliance for Green Heat and the Pellet Fuels Institute.

For more information visit

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

The Central New York Green Infrastructure Symposium

The 2010 Central New York Green Infrastructure Symposium will be held November 17th and 18th at the Crowne Plaza in Syracuse, New York. The Symposium is hosted by SUNY ESF and the Environmental Finance Center at Syracuse University and will feature presentations on the future of green infrastructure in the region, panel discussions on strategically advancing green infrastructure and field trips to local green infrastructure projects.

Abstracts for oral research presentations on topics including: stormwater management and BMPs, vegetated roofs, bioswales, rain gardens, planter boxes, pervious pavement, stormwater quality, gray vs. green infrastructure, health effects, plant selections for site development, human and behavioral dimensions, financial feasibility and climate change mitigation will be accepted until October 15th.

For more information visit or contact Virginia Williams at

Friday, October 1, 2010

Just how much is the federal government investing in New York State's clean energy economy?

The Department of Energy recently released a memo outlining clean energy investments in New York State under The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. As of June 1st, the federal government has invested $1.7 billion in New York State. These investments fit into 7 broad categories: energy efficiency, renewable energy, grid modernization, transportation, carbon capture and storage, environmental cleanup and science/innovation.

President Obama's American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is unprecedented as it has already invested a nationwide total of $90 billion for clean energy projects, which the government expects to create a national total of 800,000 jobs by 2012.

For more information visit or download a copy of the report at