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ESF Hosts State Energy Leaders to Discuss Power Delivery Future

Statewide Winter Energy Tour stops on campus

State energy leaders will continue the Statewide Winter Energy Tour at ESF this week to highlight ways communities can be involved in local power generation and distribution in order to become less reliant on the electrical grid and learn more about the State's transformational energy policies.

The information session will take place 10 to 11:30 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 29, in the Gateway Center (Rooms A and B) on the ESF campus.

The Statewide Winter Energy Tour is holding information sessions in each of the 10 Regional Economic Development Council regions, many of which have suffered from the effects of extreme weather. Local residents can learn about and discuss with energy and community leaders how changes in energy policy and strategies will affect their communities.

During the Syracuse visit, John Rhodes, President and CEO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), and Micah Kotch, Director of NY Prize and Strategic Advisor for Innovation at NYSERDA, will join business leaders, emergency managers, large commercial and residential property owners, critical facility managers, educational leaders and community-based organizations.

The focus of the tour is on community-based microgrids, which are local energy networks able to fully separate from the larger electrical grid during extreme weather events and emergencies. In the event of a power outage, microgrids can help communities provide vital public services and power to residential customers and critical operators such as hospitals, first responders and water treatment facilities. They can also add electricity to the main grid during times when overall demand is highest.

Microgrids can distribute electricity generated locally by solar, other renewable energy installations or combined heat and power systems at local sites, as well as energy storage technology where the energy can be stored for later use.

New York State is encouraging community-based microgrids through NY Prize, a $40 million first-of-its-kind competition announced by Governor Cuomo. NY Prize aims to inspire investment in locally generated power systems by challenging New York businesses, entrepreneurs and electric utilities to design and implement them.

To learn how you can help engage your community to participate, contact nyprize@nyserda.ny.gov.

New York is the leading Northeastern state, with 75 microgrids in operation and 200 megawatts of installed microgrid capacity, according to GTM Research. New York State is delivering on Governor Cuomo's commitment to transform the energy industry into a more resilient, clean, cost-effective and dynamic system by developing innovative market solutions and empowering local community leaders and entrepreneurs.

Working with State, citizen and industry-stakeholders, New York's energy policy is moving to a more market-based, decentralized approach. This means protecting the environment, decreasing energy costs, and creating opportunities for economic growth for current and future generations of New Yorkers. In advancing new energy infrastructure and solutions, New Yorkers will have improved energy affordability and efficiency without sacrificing their right to live in a cleaner, healthier, more resilient and connected community.