From live panels and Climate Week TV studio sessions to hundreds of on-demand classes at BE-Ex Ed, Building Energy Exchange was proud to participate in this year’s Climate Week 2021, a week-long showcase of climate action from September 20th to 26, hosted by the Climate Group in New York City.
At the State and City level, New York took center stage, announcing a series of ambitious building decarbonization and clean energy initiatives. Here’s a recap of last week’s developments.
At the State level, Governor Kathy Hochul announced exciting advancements of clean energy in line with the goals of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA), including major investment in two clean energy infrastructure projects– Clean Path NY and Champlain Hudson Power Express– upscaling renewable energy production in Upstate New York and Canada to power New York City and create statewide jobs; and the completion of a massive $460 million revitalization of New York’s largest clean hydropower project, the Niagara Power Project. Also in line with the CLCPA, Governor Hochul announced the establishment of the Clean Green Schools initiative, investing $59 million to accelerate clean energy and efficiency solutions for improved indoor air quality and reduced carbon emissions in disadvantaged communities, along with a $36 million investment in Regional Clean Energy Hubs to increase community outreach and statewide partnership for clean energy program development.
In addition to CLCPA objectives, Governor Hochul made moves to improve air and water quality, reduce risks to public and environmental health, and protect undeveloped land with investment in flood protection along the Hudson River, revitalization of water & transportation infrastructure in the Lake Placid region, and an agreement with the New York State Electric & Gas Corp to cancel the development of 470 acres of land in the Finger Lakes Region, including land along the Cayuga Lake shoreline.
Here in the City, the New York City Mayor’s Office announced robust electrification initiatives during Climate Week. In addition to a $75 million investment in electric vehicles and charging stations, the NYC Mayor’s Office of Climate & Sustainability launched ElectrifyNYC: a free program in collaboration with Kinetic Communities Consulting increasing access to solar and high-efficiency heating and cooling for City homeowners.
Amongst these announcements were additional voices on the ground: youth-led organization Fridays for Future held a Global Climate Strike with thousands of activists marching in downtown Manhattan on Friday, September 24th, urging policymakers to address intersectional environmental justice.
As this year’s Climate Week NYC ends, this series of ambitious commitments reminds us that much work needs to be done. Here at BE-Ex, every week is climate week. We are hopeful to see these policy advancements and advocacy efforts that align with our mission to reduce the effects of climate change by improving the built environment. In the wake of Climate Week, we hope you’ll learn more about us, attend our upcoming events, and get involved.