Green Innovations

Developing renewable and clean technology companies in New York

Monday, January 28, 2013

"One of the most important conferences on energy in New York and the Northeast."

Ninth Annual Symposium on Energy in the 21st Century

A Division of Synapse Sustainability Trust
A Future Using Net Zero Energy
Friday, April 12, 2013 at "The Links" in East Syracuse, NY
The Ninth Annual Symposium on Energy in the 21st Century proudly announces the addition of Hon. Katherine Hammack as a featured speaker at the Symposium on Energy, April 12, 2013. Secretary Hammack is the primary advisor to the Secretary of the Army and Chief of Staff of the Army on all army matters related to installation policy, oversight and coordination of energy security and management. She is also responsible for policy and oversight of sustainability and environmental initiatives and has done extensive work on Net Zero Energy.

• Jonathan Powers is the Executive Director of the White House Council of Environmental Quality. He is responsible for the promotion of environmental and energy sustainability in Federal agencies and the implementation of President Obama's Executive Order on Federal Sustainability and the GreenGov initiative.
• Jerry Davis is a Senior Engineer at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), the U.S. Department of Energy's primary national laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. The labs are located in Colorado.
Sergej Mahnovski, Ph.D is Director of Energy Policy, NYC Office of the Mayor. Sergej is the principal energy advisor responsible for managing citywide energy policy. He also chairs the New York City Energy Policy Task Force and serves on the Board of Directors of the New York State Smart Grid Consortium.
• Chris Carrick is Director of Central New York Regional Planning &Development Board. Chris manages the Climate Change Innovation Program (C2IP), funded by a Climate Showcase Communities grant from the U.S. EPA, which provides financial and technical assistance to local municipalities.
• Greg Pahl  is a well known and prolific author, whose latest very popular book is Power from the People. The book outlines how to organize, finance and launch local energy projects with information on safe, reliable and affordable harvesting of energy from sun, wind, earth and water. He lives in Vermont.
• Luke Tonachel is NRDC's senior Vehicle Analyst, Energy & Transportation Program. His focus is the reduction of environmental impacts of the world's transportation demands by adopting policies that develop and commercialize cleaner, more efficient vehicles and non-petroleum fuels.
• Kit Kennedy  will return as our superb moderator. Kit is Counsel to Air & Energy Program at  NRDC, and has special expertise in energy efficiency, renewable energy, global warming solutions and air and water pollution.
Rhea Jezer, Ph.D is director and founder of the Energy Symposium, will once again chair this, the Ninth Symposium on Energy in the 21st Century.
Frank Murray, President & CEO NYSERDA
Joannie Mahoney, County Executive, Onondaga County
Dan Maffei,Congressman, NY 24
$40 including breakfast and lunch (This fee covers one-fifth of the cost of attendees to the Symposium, and we urge those who can to become sponsors or patrons so that we can continue this annual event.)
Rhea Jezer: *Sponsorships available
What is Net Zero Energy?
The goal of net zero energy is to  produce as much energy from on-site renewable sources as is consumed. Using the Net Zero Army installations as a successful example of a large scale project, we have gathered experts from the entire country to discuss how the army model can be used in smaller efforts for communities, institutions and individual businesses and homeowners.
The Symposium  attendees include major business and environmental leaders, academicians, architects, engineers, builders, many elected officials including congressmen, mayors,  and supervisors. Also attending are commissioners, college presidents and faculty, municipal planners, governmental agency staff, architects, engineers, lawyers, farmers, media, college students and interested citizens. Two dozen colleges as well as over three dozen municipalities are represented, and every major environmental agency sends representatives. There are no breakout sessions and no tabling, just six important  high level presentations and discussions.
This Symposium has been cited as one of the most important conferences on energy in New York and the Northeast, and has consistently drawn up to 400 attendees from all over New York and the Northeastern states, as well as other parts of the country and abroad.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Learn the Benefits of Wind Turbine Technology (Adirondack Region, NY)!!

Wind Power on Tug Hill - Maple Ridge Wind Farm

Located in Lewis County primarily on the Tug Hill Plateau, the Maple Ridge Wind Farm harnesses the wind power. The constant lake-effect winds and the wide open farmland of Lewis County make the Tug Hill region an ideal place for New York’s largest wind energy farm.

Tug Hill is an ideal location for a wind energy project. This site consists of approximately 12,000 acres of hilltop pasture and feed-crop land at an average elevation of 1600-1800 feet. Tug Hill is an ancient geologic formation that lies just downwind of the eastern shore of Lake Ontario, separated from the Adirondacks to the east by the Black River Valley. At a maximum elevation of 2000 feet above sea level, the Tug Hill plateau experiences strong lake-effect weather patterns and has long been known for its exceptional wind resource.

Along with the economic benefits to the Wind Towers still allow for the area to maintain all premier outdoor recreation activities such as skiing, snowmobiling, hunting, fishing, ATV and horseback riding, while at the same time, keeping the strong agricultural land base and heritage.

While Maple Ridge Wind Farm involves 21,000 acres, the Wind Towers themselves use less than one percent of the total acreage. The entire project covers an approximately 12 by 3 mile stretch through the Towns of Martinsburg, Lowville and Harrisburg.

Many of the Wind Towers placed on family farms provide an alternative commodity for Lewis County beyond milk, which is currently the largest agricultural commodity produced in the county, followed by maple syrup and wood pulp.

The 195 Wind Towers in operation, make Maple Ridge Wind Farm the largest wind tower project east of the Mississippi River.

A Wind Tower, sometimes called a Wind Turbine, is made up of a tower, the nacelle (the machine housed atop the tower), and the rotor. The weight of the nacelle and the rotor is 75 tons. It cost approximately 2.8 million to build one Wind Tower. Each Wind Tower is 260 feet tall, with a rotor blade length of 130 feet. The total height is 390 feet for each Tower. The span across is approximately 260 feet. Each blade weighs 7 metric tons and is made from a wood interior coated with fiberglass. The rotor blade speed is 14 RPM (revolutions per minute) which translates to 1200 RPM’s at the generator. The blade will produce electricity when the wind is blowing at about 8-10 miles per hour and will shut down when the wind is higher then 42 miles per hour.

As you drive by the Wind Farm you will see that some Wind Towers are not turning. This is because at any one time 10 Towers are under daily scheduled maintenance.

Economic Benefits
Each Wind Tower produces enough power for 560 homes. Maple Ridge Wind Farm should produce enough power, on average, for 125,000 homes or to put it in North Country terms, enough electricity to completely supply all of the electrical energy needs for Lewis, Jefferson and St. Lawrence Counties, including all the industries, schools and hospitals in the three-county area. This is clean, renewable energy and will save on the emission of carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide (smog) and sulfur dioxide (acid rain).

The American Wind Energy Association estimates that 1 MW of wind generation capacity is the equivalent of 1 square mile of new forest, in terms of offsetting or displacing carbon dioxide from conventional generating sources. The Maple Ridge Wind Farm should produce 321 MW which is equivalent to 205,440 acres of new forest or equal to 3.4% of Adirondack Park. Where does all this power go? The Maple Ridge Wind Farm power goes into the New York State energy grid through a substation located near Rector Road in the Town of Martinsburg. It is then piped through a 230kV line to a substation on the Wetmore Road in Glenfield 10.3 miles away. This line is attached to the main 230kV National Grid bulk transmission line that extends across NYS to the East Coast, from Boston to New York City and all cities and towns in between.

The Maple Ridge Wind Farm can provide 2% of NYS’s residential power needs.

Turbine Informaiton

Modern wind turbine generators are robust, sophisticated high-tech machines designed to convert the power of the wind into electricity.

Main Components: The tower, the nacelle (machine house atop the tower), and the rotor

Height of Flat Rock Wind Turbine Towers: 260 feet

Rotor Blade Length: 130 feet

Rotor Blade Speed: 14 RPM (revolutions per minute)

How Electricity Leaves the Turbine and Brings Us Power: Electricity from each 1.65 MW wind turbine generator is fed through numerous 34.5-kilovolt power underground cables that come together at the wind farm substation near Rector Road. These cables channel the electricity via a step-up transformer and dedicated ten-mile power line into the New York electricity grid at the 230-kilovolt Niagara Mohawk Adirondack line, feeding power to towns and cities across New York's North Country and beyond. Sophisticated computer control systems run constantly to ensure that the machines are operating efficiently and safely.

Pollution Offset: The American Wind Energy Association estimates that 1 MW of wind generation capacity is the equivalent of 1 square mile of new forest, in terms of offsetting or displacing carbon dioxide from conventional generating sources.

Learn more at

Friday, January 25, 2013

Learn more about Green Tech grants through the Center of Excellence.

Funding Opportunities

Photo: Recipients of 2009 TAD Awards at The Tech Garden in June 2009.
SyracuseCoE supports Research,Demonstration, and Commercialization through its "Innovation Ecosystem" grant cycle. Click on the links below to learn more about these grants, past recipients, and current Requests for Proposals.
SyracuseCoE Funding Guide
SyracuseCoE staff research and assemble information about sources of potential funding for collaborations with and among our partners. We encourage our partners to review this Funding Guide and make inquiries of the sponsors and agencies about the fit of their programs with your research, development, and education interests.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Switch to Clean Technologies, Reduce Energy Costs.

Green Jobs - Green New York

A statewide program to promote energy efficiency and the installation of clean technologies to reduce energy costs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The program will support sustainable community development and create opportunities for green jobs. This program will be administered by NYSERDA.
The Green Jobs - Green New York (GJGNY) Program provides New Yorkers with access to energy assessments, installation services, low-cost financing (currently for residential customers only), and pathways to training for various green-collar careers.
The GJGNY Program delivers services in targeted communities with the support of Constituency Based Organizations (CBOs). CBOs recruit residential, small businesses, Not-for-Profits (NFP), and multi-family building owners into the energy assessment and financing programs; and encourage individuals to take advantage of clean energy training opportunities.


Free or low-cost energy assessments through NYSERDA's Home Performance with ENERGY STAR Program are available to residential customers.
For those that want to take advantage of low interest financing, HPwES offers two options through Green Jobs – Green NY.*Both loan options offer up to $13,000 per household, up to $25,000 if the project meets higher cost-effectiveness standards, and repayment periods of 5, 10, or 15 years.
Option 1: On-bill recovery loans provide homeowners the convenience of paying for energy improvements on their utility bill.
  • The current interest rate* is 3.49%
  • Payments will be included in monthly charges from your utility
  • Your annual loan payment is calculated to not exceed the anticipated amount of money you save on energy costs
  • When you sell your home you will have the option to transfer the unpaid balance of loan to the new owners
  • Requires an On-Bill Recovery Program Declaration. The Declaration is not a lien on the property, but is recorded in a similar way as a Mortgage to provide notice to others of the obligations under the loan transaction.
  • Learn more about interest rates and how to apply at Energy Finance Solutions.Link opens in new window - close new window to return to this page.
  • Learn more about the On-Bill Recovery Loan Program.
Option 2: Unsecured loans offer affordable interest rates, flexible terms and simple repayment options.
  • The current interest rate* is 3.99% or 3.49% if you pay via automatic bank withdrawals
  • Repaid monthly directly to NYSERDA’s loan servicer
For full eligibility requirements and instructions on how to apply for either loan, visit our Residential Financing page or call 1-800-361-5663.

Small Business and Not-for-Profit

Programs for small businesses and not-for-profits offer access to walk-through energy assessments and low-interest energy efficiency project financingSmall businesses and not-for-profits can finance energy efficiency upgrades with low interest payments conveniently built into one energy bill. Offset the payment with the savings you earn over the year. Learn more about the On-Bill Recovery Loan Program.


The Multifamily Performance Program (MPP) provides a comprehensive building assessment to identify energy savings opportunities in the buildings. The program identifies available incentives and financing opportunitiesComing soon, multifamily building owners can finance energy efficiency upgrades through low interest payments conveniently built into one energy bill. Offset the payment with the savings you earn. Learn more about the On-Bill Recovery Loan Program.

Workforce Development

A lot of interest and enthusiasm surrounds the topic of "green jobs" and training for clean energy careers. Workforce training programs and other training partnerships are available across the State to encourage the development of a skilled clean-energy workforce that supports energy efficiency and the installation of clean technologies.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Big win for Green Tech enthusiasts (Green Bank and Solar Program)!!

New York Governor Announces $1 Billion Green Bank And $1.5 Billion Solar Program

New York City officials are thinking more about climate resiliency in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. But adaptation — making the city more resilient to intensifying extreme weather — is only one part of an effective strategy.
Mitigating climate change through clean energy and other carbon reduction efforts is just as important. And New York Governor Andrew Cuomo seems to understand that.
In his State of the State address yesterday, Cuomo outlined plans for a new billion-dollar  “green bank” to leverage private funds for deploying clean energy technologies, announced a 10-year expansion of the state’s solar program by increasing funds $150 million per year, and named a new cleantech czar to oversee the efforts. The cumulative impact could be a massive expansion of renewables and efficiency in New York.
Here’s what the Governor had to say about the Green Bank:
The NY Green Bank leverages private capital in a fashion that mitigates investment risk, catalyzes market activity and lowers borrowing costs, in turn bringing down the prices paid by consumers. Through the use of bonding, loans and various credit enhancements (e.g.,loan loss reserves and guarantees), a Green Bank is a fiscally practical option in a time of severe budget conditions.Many public credit and investment programs require only a small amount of government funds, even holding taxpayers harmless or acting asmoney makers. And along with these benefits, the long-term public and social benefits of a robust and clean economy are virtually incalculable.
And here’s the language on the solar program:
Last year Governor Cuomo created the NY-Sun solar jobs program to bolster the use of solar power in New York, while also protecting the ratepayer. The goal of NY-Sun is to install twice as much customer-sited solar photovoltaic capacity in 2012 as was added in 2011, and to quadruple the 2011 amount in 2013. The NY-Sun program is authorized through 2015. This year, Governor Cuomo proposes to extend the successful NY-Sun program, continuing through 2023 the existing annual funding levels established under the program. The extended solar jobs program will provide longer program certainty to solar developers than current programs, funded through 2015, and is expected to attract significant private investment in solar photovoltaic systems, enable the sustainable development of a robust solar power industry in New York, create well-paying skilled jobs, improve the reliability of the electric grid, and reduce air pollution.
Solar has the potential to play a huge role in New York’s climate-conscious building strategy. Consider this: Two-thirds of New York City’s buildings could feasibly host solar-electric systems — enough to meet half the city’s demand for peak power. And a lot of that could be developed today at a cost competitive with current electricity rates.
The solar industry has been working hard for many years to expand New York’s solar policies. And this latest announcement from Governor Cuomo shows it’s really starting to pay off.  But actually funding these programs is the real issue. The State of the State address is designed to outline priorities — not always outline a plan for implementation. It remains to be seen if the Governor can fully raise the amount of money needed to meet these goals. The appointment of Richard Kauffman, a former adviser to Energy Secretary Steven Chu, as energy czar will certainly help the process along.