Recognize Environmental Benefits of NYPA Fuel Cells
June 24, 2004
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEW YORK—The New York Power Authority (NYPA) was
among those organizations honored Thursday by the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Energy (DOE) at an
industry conference in New York City for its installation late last
year of eight fuel cells at four sewage treatment plants operated by
the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP).
NYPA received a Certificate of Recognition for
the fuel cells, which harness waste gas—also known as anaerobic
digester gas (ADG)—to generate electricity for the sewage treatment
plants. ADG is a byproduct of the waste-water treatment process.
Qualifying projects must demonstrate emerging
technologies, fuel diversity or otherwise advance new markets for
environmentally beneficial ways of generating electricity.
“We’re highly appreciative of the formal
recognition by the EPA and DOE since it spotlights the significant
role fuel cells can play for electricity production and improved air
quality,” said Eugene W. Zeltmann, NYPA president and chief
executive officer. “They’re also in keeping with the overall
direction set by Governor George E. Pataki for increased use of
clean, diverse sources of renewable power to meet New York State’s
future energy needs.”
The certificate presentation came on the first
day of a two-day Combined Heat and Power Conference conducted by the
New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)
at the Crowne Plaza Time Square in New York City.
“Fuel cells rely on an environmentally benign
chemical process in which hydrogen is extracted from whatever fuel
they’re using to produce electricity without combustion, making it
possible to site them at locations where the power is consumed,”
said Shalom Zelingher, NYPA director, Research and Technology
Development. He accepted the certificate on behalf of the Authority,
along with Yan Kishinevsky, R&D program manager.
The eight fuel cells—each 200 kilowatts (kw)
—are at NYCDEP sewage-treatment plants in the Bronx (Hunts Point),
in Brooklyn (Red Hook and near Starrett City), and on Staten Island
Collectively, they eliminate about 170 tons of
regulated emissions annually and more than 9,000 tons of the
greenhouse gas carbon dioxide.
The fuel cells cost approximately $13 million,
with the DOE and NYSERDA providing $2-1/2 million of funding to
support NYPA’s efforts.
The Power Authority gained its first experience
with fuel cells in 1997, when it installed a unit at the Westchester
County Wastewater Treatment Facility in Yonkers. The installation
earned NYPA the 2000 Environmental Project of the Year Award from
the Association of Energy Engineers.
Following the unit in Westchester, NYPA
installed three other fuel cells in New York City at the Central
Park Police Precinct, North Central Bronx Hospital and the Wildlife
Conservation Society’s New York Aquarium at Coney Island. Those fuel
cells, unlike the ones at the wastewater treatment facilities, use
natural gas instead of ADG.