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City Hall "Turns Green"

From the Office of Syracuse Mayor Matthew J. Driscoll
8/29

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 23, 2005
CONTACT: Media Center
Colleen Deacon (315) 448-8005

Syracuse, NY - Today, Mayor Matthew J. Driscoll joined Dr. Neil Murphy, President of SUNY-ESF; 5th District Councilor William B. Simmons; Chuckie Holstein, Executive Director of FOCUS Greater Syracuse; Stacey Smith of Turn the Grid Green and community members announced the City of Syracuse is converting all of City Hall's electricity and gas needs to clean, green, renewable power effective August 23, 2005. City Hall will no longer burn conventional fossil fuels. It will be powered by 40% small hydro, 20% wind and 40% biomass.

"Every kilowatt hour of electricity that does not pollute, is a savings to the tax payer. This current event is a continuation of our many energy saving initiatives we have undertaken in the last four years, but it will certainly not be the last in our efforts for the environment," said Mayor Matthew J. Driscoll.

Common Councilor Bill Simmons, who is leading the charge to convert to green on the Council side said, "this administration is choosing sustainable energy resources in an effort to protect and preserve the environment. We are stewards of the environment and we must pressure ourselves, area businesses and homeowners to critically examine energy usage and abate non-sustainable uses in order to preserve this planet for future generations."

City Hall represents 4% of the City's overall electricity consumption. The City is signing a one-year, renewable contract with Sterling Planet the nation's leading renewable energy provider.

This conversion process is a cooperative endeavor between the city administration and local environmental groups, including the Turn the Grid Green Sustainable Energy Campaign and Global Warming Action Network. Concerned citizens are pleased with the city's conversion and will continue to work with the city with its on-going environmental efforts.

SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry President, Dr. Cornelius B. Murphy, Jr., said, "We, at ESF, strongly support the sustainable energy initiatives being under-taken by the City of Syracuse."

"Greening City Hall" is a community event to celebrate this green power conversion. The celebration will include contract signing, ribbon cutting, a children's choir, banner raising, a magic show, balloon creations and an ice cream social. There will be educational materials on energy conservation, energy efficiency, green power and global warming. This celebration is free and open to the public. We hope you will come and bring your children for this enlightening event.


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