NYPA White Plains Office Building
Recognized for Environmental Sustainability:
First Facility in New York State to Earn U.S. Green Building Council
Gold Designation for Existing Buildings
January 25, 2007
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WHITE PLAINS—The New York Power Authority (NYPA)
announced Thursday that its 17-story administrative office building
here has received LEED® Gold-EB (Leadership in Energy and
Environmental Design-Existing Building) ranking from the U.S. Green
Building Council (USGBC), attesting to its environmental
sustainability and status as a “green” building.
It is the first existing building in New York
State to achieve LEED Gold-EB and among only 19 such Gold
facilities, new or existing, in the country.
The Gold designation signifies that that the
Clarence D. Rappleyea Building, at 123 Main Street, meets the
rigorous LEED performance standards for five key areas: sustainable
site development, energy efficiency, water savings, materials
selection and indoor environmental quality.
“I congratulate the New York Power Authority for
achieving this important designation,” said Governor Eliot Spitzer.
“It is central to our plans to incorporate this type of sustainable
building practice for projects in both the private and public
“Going for the Gold is what we did and achieving it
places the Rappleyea building among the ranks of the most energy
efficient and environmentally-sound buildings in the country,” said
Timothy S. Carey, NYPA president and chief executive officer, at a
news conference outside the Rappleyea building. “LEED-certified
buildings enhance occupants’ health and productivity, help conserve
the Earth’s resources and reduce carbon emissions that are melting
the Arctic ice cap and warming the planet. The measures we undertook
to achieve the LEED recognition are centered on the belief that
government should lead by example in matters of overriding
importance such as the environment and energy security.
“These and other sustainability initiatives are in
line with my goal of making the Power Authority the cleanest and
greenest electric utility in the United States,” added Carey.
The USGBC developed the LEED program in 2000 to
establish a nationally-accepted benchmark for new environmentally
sustainable construction. In 2004, the council broadened the LEED
program to existing buildings like NYPA’s administrative office
building, which was constructed in the early 1980s and purchased by
the Authority in 1991.
“The LEED designation brings a bold new dimension
to the Power Authority’s long history of leadership in protecting
the environment and conserving vital resources,” said Frank S.
McCullough Jr., NYPA chairman. “This building—with its green
attributes and its gold designation—will stand as a tribute to what
has been accomplished.
“When Tim Carey took office as the Power
Authority’s president and CEO at just about this time last year, one
of his top priorities from day one was to transform the Rappleyea
building into an environmentalist’s dream—and to win LEED
recognition. He never lost sight of that goal—and didn’t allow
anyone else to, either,” added McCullough.
“The Power Authority’s administrative office
building in Westchester joins an elite group of existing and new
buildings receiving LEED recognition,” said Rick Fedrizzi, USGBC
president, CEO and founding chair, as he, Carey and McCullough
unveiled a Gold-EB plaque mounted on the Rappleyea building. “This
is a superlative distinction, and the Power Authority has every
reason to be proud. Each time another building successfully goes
through the LEED process, it reinforces the message of the value of
environmental sustainability, not to mention the potential financial
gains from lower operating costs and a healthier workplace.”
The Power Authority undertook wide-ranging
sustainability measures in 2006 at the Rappleyea building, which is
named after the former NYPA chairman and Assembly minority leader,
who was on hand for Thursday’s event. The improvements included:
Installation of new air filters to enhance
indoor environmental quality.
Use of non-hazardous paints with low-volatile
organic compounds, green cleaning products and recycled
Expanded recycling of paper, bottles and cans.
Cutting anticipated annual water use by 130,000
gallons through such measures as installation of a landscaping
control system, low-flush toilets and reduced-flow bathroom
Providing designated parking in the Rappleyea
building garage for employees and tenants driving in car pools
or using hybrid-electric vehicles.
Purchasing renewable energy credits for 30
percent of the building’s energy use.
The various measures built on the Power Authority’s
completion of a $3.4 million energy efficiency upgrade in 2002 that
cut the Rappleyea building’s annual electricity use by more than 50
percent, or some five million kilowatt hours, compared to 1990
levels. This surpassed a 35 percent reduction that state-owned
buildings are required to achieve by 2010 under an Executive Order
issued by former Governor George E. Pataki in 2001 and renewed
earlier this month by Governor Spitzer.
The initial upgrade by the Power Authority resulted
in annual savings of $450,000 a year in electricity costs for the
headquarters building, where about 60 percent of the space is
utilized by NYPA administrative staff, including engineers, lawyers
and economists, with the remaining areas leased to private
enterprises. The initiatives also cut the building’s annual
greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 2,800 tons, along with displacing
more than 7,300 barrels of oil a year.
The upgrade included the installation of two new
460-ton chillers that are about twice as efficient as their
predecessors, efficient T8 lamps and electronic ballasts, automated
occupancy sensors, variable frequency drives, premium efficient
motors, reflective window film to help regulate building temperature
and light-emitting-diode exit signs. The Power Authority also
installed two on-site power sources—a 30-kilowatt microturbine and a
5.5-kilowatt rooftop solar photovoltaic project, which further
reduce the building’s demand for electricity from the power grid.
“Together, these enhancements established the
foundation for last year’s sustainability measures for LEED EB-Gold
certification,” said Carey. “Now we’re looking to do more—at this
building, at other Power Authority facilities and in helping our
customers attain LEED certification for their buildings. We’re also
working to bring sustainable practices to all of our operations—not
just buildings, but power plants, transmission rights-of-ways, the
entire Power Authority system.”
Before heading the Power Authority, Carey served as
president and chief executive officer of the Hugh L. Carey Battery
Park City Authority in Lower Manhattan, from May 1999 to September
2005. He presided over the construction of the nation’s first green
residential high-rise building—The Solaire—which earned LEED Gold
certification in 2004. Last year, the USGBC elected Carey to its
2007 Board of Directors.
The Power Authority invested about $110 million in
energy efficiency and clean energy projects throughout the state in
2006, breaking a previous annual record. It also surpassed the $1
billion mark for total investment in such projects since the late
To date, the Power Authority has undertaken
energy-efficiency and clean-energy initiatives at more than 2,400
public facilities, including more than 220 in Westchester County,
that have reduced annual greenhouse gas emissions by more than
750,000 tons. This is in addition to annual savings to those
facilities—schools, hospitals, municipal buildings, police and fire
stations and others—approaching $100 million, and annual
displacement of nearly 2 million barrels of oil.
Excerpts from remarks of Timothy S. Carey,
president and chief executive officer of the New York Power
Excerpts from remarks of Frank S. McCullough,
Jr., chairman of the New York Power Authority,
■ NYPA uses no tax money or
state credit. It finances its operations through the sale of
bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of
electricity. ■ NYPA is a leader in promoting
energy-efficiency, new energy technologies and electric
transportation initiatives. ■ It is the
nation’s largest state-owned electric utility, with 18 generating
facilities in various parts of the state and more than 1,400
circuit-miles of transmission lines.
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