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Source: Syracuse Post-Standard

Gov. David Paterson: Solar energy in New York will increase five-fold by 2014


Posted: January 28, 2010
Originally Published: January 27, 2010

Syracuse, NY -- Gov. David Paterson came to Syracuse today to announce an energy project that will increase the amount of solar energy produced in the state by five.

Paterson said plans are in place to install 100 megawatts of solar panels statewide by 2014. Currently, the state has a 22-megawatt solar system.

The new project will be largest solar initiative in state history and will create jobs, spur economic development and reduce New York’s carbon footprint, Paterson said.

“It’s going to make our air clean, create new jobs and make the future much better,” Paterson said during his announcement at the State University College of Environmental Science and Forestry. “New Yorkers will be able to realize the benefits almost immediately.”

A request for proposal for developers went out today. Richard Kessel, head of the New York Power Authority, which will administer the project, said his agency hopes to select a developer or developers by summer and see the first solar panels installed by December.

Most of the panels will go up in schools, libraries, municipal buildings and rural electric cooperatives. When all 100 megawatts are up and running, the system will produce enough energy to power 15,000 homes, officials said.

Paterson said the initiative is also expected to create 50,000 jobs as laborers will be needed to manufacture the panels and their components and install them.

Elected officials, community representatives and environmental advocates all cheered Paterson's plan.

“We can make positive, real-life economic changes and environmental benefits at the same time,” said Dereth Glance, executive program director of the Citizens Campaign for the Environment. “This is the direction we want our energy policy to be going.”