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Jan. 15, 2013: New York State Launches ‘Build Smart NY’ Initiative

ALBANY, N.Y. — Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has issued an executive order directing state agencies to increase energy efficiency in state buildings by 20 percent in seven years, one of the most ambitious initiatives in the nation that is expected to save millions of dollars for the state. In conjunction with this announcement, Cuomo also launched “Build Smart NY,” a plan to strategically implement the executive order.

“Improving energy efficiency in our buildings is a smart investment in our present and future,” Cuomo said. “Through Build Smart NY, state government can produce significant savings for New York taxpayers and generate thousands of jobs, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions by more than eight million metric tons, which is the same as taking one million cars off the road for one year. Furthermore, most of the projects will pay for themselves as their energy savings will cover their costs, making this initiative a financial and environmental win-win for New Yorkers.”

The Build Smart NY plan that will use state building energy data to prioritize projects that will deliver the greatest energy savings per dollar spent. The largest and most inefficient buildings will be addressed first and undergo comprehensive whole-building improvements. Building improvements include measures like new lighting, HVAC systems, electric motors, and energy management systems.

Build Smart NY supports the governor’s larger NY Works program and economic development agenda which coordinates state funding to accelerate projects that will create jobs and improve the state’s infrastructure. NY Works is designed to expedite select projects with maximum economic impact, allowing them to begin as soon as possible and reduce project costs.

Similarly, Build Smart NY will accelerate projects that produce the greatest savings and coordinate all spending. The program will also ensure that cost-effective improvements for energy savings are considered in all of the state’s capital project planning.

The New York Power Authority (NYPA) has committed to provide $450 million in low-cost financing for this initiative. Additionally, for most projects, no upfront capital spending will be required because agencies will be able to repay the loans through the projects’ energy savings. Also in support of Build Smart NY, the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority’s (NYSERDA’s) energy efficiency programs will provide information to help state agencies and others make informed energy decisions and also provide financial incentives to help offset the costs of energy efficiency improvements.

For more information, visit www.buildsmart.ny.gov.

Publication date: 1/14/2013 

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