SUNY and New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) this week announced that SUNY will save more than $1.2 million annually in energy costs throughout its 64 campuses by incorporating energy-efficient information technology and related facility improvements. The energy-saving projects, which are expected to be completed in 2014, support Governor Cuomo’s Build Smart NY Initiative, which aims to increase energy efficiency in state buildings by 20 percent in seven years.
NYSERDA will provide performance-based incentives through its Industrial and Process Efficiency Program for energy-saving projects that support SUNY’s systemwide Information Technology (IT) transformation. The incentive is based on an energy savings of more than 10 million kilowatt hours annually, which is equivalent to providing electricity to 1,482 average-sized homes. The transformation was first announced in Chancellor Zimpher’s 2012 State of the University Address and is on track for a 2014 completion.
“SUNY’s ability to team with NYSERDA for this initiative is an outstanding example of our systemness at work,” said SUNY Chancellor Zimpher. “As part of a continued commitment to sharing services within SUNY, our campuses have an added incentive to carry out projects that cut energy costs and free up more savings that can be reinvested in students. We are proud to support Governor Cuomo’s Build Smart NY initiative with this effort.”
Campus projects that will be supported by NYSERDA funding include relocation of campus information systems to one of the main data centers or to SUNY cloud-based technology, air conditioning replacements and upgrades in support of the relocations, consolidation of IT services, and more.
“We commend SUNY on its commitment and investment in decreasing its energy consumption through this SUNY-wide IT project, which strongly supports Governor Cuomo’s Build Smart NY Initiative,” said Francis J. Murray Jr., president and CEO of NYSERDA. “The savings SUNY will achieve through energy-efficiency measures not only demonstrates the financial benefits from such an investment but the environmental stewardship being undertaken throughout the university system.”
“As statewide coordinator for Governor Cuomo’s Executive Order 88 and the Build Smart NY Initiative, the Power Authority applauds SUNY for this leading edge energy efficiency and technology initiative,” said Gil C. Quiniones, president and CEO of the New York Power Authority. “SUNY continues to be one of the leading organizations showing that state facilities are working vigorously toward Governor Cuomo’s 20 percent energy efficiency improvement target under Build Smart NY.”
Governor Cuomo’s Build Smart NY Initiative 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. 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 the state’s capital project planning.
Contributing to an energy-smart New York is one of the driving tenets of SUNY’s strategic plan, The Power of SUNY.
Maxwell is the Coordinator of Digital Engagement for The State University of New York.