Niagara Hydropower To Spur More Than $100 Million in Private Capital Investments in Western New York
NYPA Funding To Aid in Green Hydrogen Feasibility Study
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that the New York Power Authority Board of Trustees has approved economic development awards to 25 companies that will support more than 12,000 jobs — nearly 500 newly created — and spur more than $410 million in capital investments. Low-cost power through the ReCharge NY program was allocated to 23 applicants throughout the state, and Niagara low-cost hydropower was awarded to two firms in Western New York. Additionally, the NYPA Board approved a Western New York Power Proceeds award to support the deployment of green hydrogen in New York State.
"We are leading the way forward toward a thriving, resilient economy powered by clean energy," Governor Hochul said. "These awards will establish more energy efficient infrastructure, stimulate our economy, create jobs, and pave the way for a cleaner and more sustainable future. My administration will continue to prioritize green energy projects that attract the industries of tomorrow to New York."
ReCharge NY Awards
The approved allocations of nearly nine megawatts (MW) of low-cost power under the ReCharge NY program will be directed to 23 companies in the Capital District, Central New York, Finger Lakes, Hudson Valley, New York City, Western New York and on Long Island. The awards directly support more than 12,000 jobs — 458 newly created — and more than $305 million in capital investments.
ReCharge NY has strengthened New York State's economy by encouraging companies to retain and create jobs, while sparking capital investment throughout the state. ReCharge NY offers power contracts up to seven-years. Half of the power — 455 MW — is from NYPA's Niagara and St. Lawrence-Franklin D. Roosevelt hydroelectric power plants. The remaining 455 MW is lower-cost power bought by NYPA on the wholesale market.
New York Power Authority Interim President and CEO Justin E. Driscoll said, "Through the ReCharge NY program, NYPA is driving New York's transition to a clean energy economy. The low-cost power program will add nearly 500 jobs to New York's talented workforce and revitalize communities with more than $305 million in private capital investments."
Some notable allocations approved by the NYPA Board through ReCharge NY today include awards to Albany Medical Center in the Capital District, Urban Fields Agriculture on Long Island, and Morgan Stanley in New York City.
A full list of today's ReCharge NY power allocations and economic development awards is available here.
Western NY Awards
The NYPA board also approved low-cost Niagara hydropower allocations to two companies in Western New York: Coal Ash Recycling (CAR) and SonwilDistribution Center, Inc.
New York Power Authority Chairman and Buffalo resident John R. Koelmel said, "Hydropower from the Niagara Power project is the backbone of Western New York's economy. The hydropower awards approved at today's meeting will support firms that advance the goals of New York's nation-leading climate agenda and provide important services that will strengthen Western New York's growing clean energy economy."
The NYPA board approved a 2,550-kilowatt (kW) hydropower allocation in support of CAR's expansion, spurring approximately $45 million in capital investment and creating 20 green jobs in the region.
CAR, an owner of landfill sites that hold fly ash, a key component in concrete manufacturing, is planning an expansion project at its Fredonia facility to remediate and process fly ash so that it may be used in the production of low-carbon green concrete. Fly ash is a byproduct of burning ground coal to generate electricity. CAR's Chautauqua County landfill contains fly ash produced at the Dunkirk Generating Station in the 1960s through the 1980s.
The production of cement, a common ingredient in concrete, is responsible for nearly 8 percent of the world's carbon emissions. Substituting fly ash for cement in concrete production increases the life of concrete structures by improving its overall strength and durability. Additionally, it saves water and significantly reduces greenhouse gas emissions.
CAR's application was considered under the Green Jobs Evaluation Incentive Plan approved by the trustees on December 9, 2020. The plan allows for the consideration of green jobs impacts when evaluating applications for NYPA hydropower. CAR's project meets the qualifying criteria as a green jobs company in New York State. Additionally, the project supports the state's Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act and Low Embodied Carbon Concrete Leadership Act, which requires the use of low-carbon concrete on New York State funded projects.
Sonwil Distribution Center, a storage, and distribution company based in Western New York for more than 80 years, was allocated 500 kW of hydropower to construct a 334,000 square-foot distribution warehouse in West Seneca to support the growth of its existing customer base while providing the additional capacity needed to attract new clients. The nearly $60 million facility will serve as a multi-temperature storage, distribution and packaging site for finished food and beverage products. The project will allow the company to support the growth of existing manufacturers and help attract new ones to Western New York, which is expected to drive additional regional economic activity and create 19 new, full-time, permanent positions.
Low-cost Niagara hydropower is available for companies within a 30-mile radius of the Power Authority's Niagara Power Project or businesses in Chautauqua County. Niagara hydropower is linked to tens of thousands of existing jobs in the region.
Additionally, the NYPA Board of Trustees approved a $35,000 award from the Western New York Power Proceeds Fund.
Niagara University was awarded $35,000 in funding to support a campus-wide feasibility study that will examine the potential to reduce emissions by increasing its use of green hydrogen.
New York leads a regional coalition of six states collaborating on advancements in clean hydrogen projects throughout the region in alignment with each state's ambitious climate and clean energy goals, including a critical focus on climate and environmental justice.
The NYPA funding award is made possible through net earnings resulting from the sale of unused hydropower generated at NYPA's Niagara power plant and stems from power proceeds legislation signed into law in 2012.
Assemblymember Michael J. Cusick said, "ReCharge NY awards from the New York Power Authority advance our state's ambitious climate and clean energy goals. This new round of awards will stimulate New York's economy by adding hundreds of jobs and spurring large-scale capital investment."
New York State's Nation-Leading Climate Plan
New York State's nation-leading climate agenda is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy as New York State recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. Enshrined into law through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York is on a path to achieve its mandated goal of a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040, including 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, and to reach economy wide carbon neutrality. It builds on New York's unprecedented investments to ramp-up clean energy including over $35 billion in 120 large-scale renewable and transmission projects across the state, $6.8 billion to reduce buildings emissions, $1.8 billion to scale up solar, more than $1 billion for clean transportation initiatives, and over $1.6 billion in NY Green Bank commitments. Combined, these investments are supporting more than 165,000 jobs in New York's clean energy sector in 2021, a 2,100 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2011 and a commitment to develop 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035. Under the Climate Act, New York will build on this progress and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050, while ensuring that at least 35 percent with a goal of 40 percent of the benefits of clean energy investments are directed to disadvantaged communities, and advance progress towards the state's 2025 energy efficiency target of reducing on-site energy consumption by 185 trillion BTUs of end-use energy savings.
Contact the Governor’s Press Office
Contact us by phone:
New York City: (212) 681 - 4640