NYSERDA and NYPA Announce More than 50 Colleges and Universities Across the State Make Clean Energy Commitment to Campus and Community

REV Campus Challenge reaches 30 percent of goal in first year to enlist schools to improve campus efficiency, reduce carbon emissions, engage local communities

Supports New York's recent adoption of the Clean Energy Standard and its aggressive mandate to achieve 50 percent renewables by 2030

August 30, 2016

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and the New York Power Authority (NYPA) announced today 55 colleges and universities have signed the REV Campus Challenge, pledging to implement clean energy projects and principles on campus and in their local community. The initiative is part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) strategy to build a clean, resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers.

Announced by Governor Cuomo in 2015, REV Campus Challenge obtains commitments from two- and four-year public and private colleges and universities to demonstrate clean energy leadership in greenhouse gas emission reduction, research and development, curricula integration and community engagement. It is a joint initiative between NYSERDA and NYPA and supports the REV initiative of the State "leading by example" by building energy efficiency into colleges and communities. It also supports the Clean Energy Standard mandate that New York State obtain 50 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030.

In its first year of operation, REV Campus Challenge has already reached more than 30 percent of its goal to enroll 150 colleges in the State. There are 12 colleges signed up in New York City, eight in Central New York, seven each in Western New York and the Mid-Hudson Region, four each in Southern Tier, Capital Region, North Country and Mohawk Valley regions, three in the Finger Lakes and two on Long Island.

"Colleges and universities can play a critical role in driving clean energy activities by putting ideas from the classroom to work on campus and in their communities," said John B. Rhodes, President and CEO, NYSERDA. "We thank the campus leaders who have taken the REV Campus Challenge pledge, and urge the others to follow suit, as every institution can help the State achieve Governor Cuomo's nation-leading clean energy goals."

"In working with many SUNY campuses on a range of energy efficiency projects, we know colleges and universities want to lead by example when it comes to clean energy," said Gil C. Quiniones, president and CEO, NYPA. "The REV challenge takes that commitment to a new level and puts New York in a better position to drastically reduce its greenhouse gas emissions."

As a first step to joining REV Campus Challenge, many member institutions will need to create or update a roadmap for managing energy use and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The Challenge will provide resources and funding opportunities to assist in this roadmap development and has a goal of establishing roadmaps at 80 percent of REV Campus Challenge member campuses by 2025.

Also, Challenge members will engage in peer-to-peer mentorship and knowledge-sharing among institutions to increase the rate of clean energy project development. In addition, the Challenge aims to increase participation by 30 percent above current levels with groups such as the New York Coalition for Sustainability in Higher Education.

Each school chooses from three membership levels - Leader, Achiever or Participant -- to indicate its current progress toward clean energy adoption. Members at every level have the opportunity to receive public recognition for their progress and achievements, and have access to tools, resources and funding to augment in-house expertise to turn clean energy project ideas into actions.

Leaders have demonstrated comprehensive campus clean energy investments, embrace clean energy research and development and curricula efforts at their institution, and are looking to increase engagement with their communities. Achievers have formally committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and have dedicated staff to focus on clean energy investments. Participants have a strong desire to jump-start their institution's commitment to clean energy, engage in energy efficiency opportunities, and investigate the potential for on-campus renewable energy projects. Currently, 20 colleges and universities are Leaders, 20 are Achievers and 15 are Participants in REV Campus Challenge.

A list of REV Campus Challenge members and a map of their locations can be found here. For information on how a college or university can become a REV Campus Challenge member visit Championing Clean Energy Solutions.

A PHOTO related to the REV Campus Challenge is available on NYSERDA's Flickr page.

About Reforming the Energy Vision

Reforming the Energy Vision is Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's strategy to lead on climate change and grow New York's economy. REV is building a cleaner, more resilient and affordable energy system for all New Yorkers by stimulating investment in clean technologies like solar, wind, and energy efficiency and generating 50 percent of the state's electricity needs from renewable energy by 2030. Already, REV has driven 600 percent growth in the statewide solar market, enabled over 105,000 low-income households to permanently cut their energy bills with energy efficiency, and created thousands of jobs in manufacturing, engineering, and other clean tech sectors. REV is ensuring New York State reduces statewide greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by 2030 and achieves the internationally-recognized target of reducing emissions 80 percent by 2050. To learn more about REV, including the Governor's $5 billion investment in clean energy technology and innovation, please visit www.ny.gov/REV4NY and follow us at @Rev4NY.

About NYSERDA

NYSERDA, a public benefit corporation, offers objective information and analysis, innovative programs, technical expertise, and funding to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency, save money, use renewable energy, and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. NYSERDA professionals work to protect the environment and create clean-energy jobs. NYSERDA has been developing partnerships to advance innovative energy solutions in New York State since 1975. To learn more about NYSERDA’s programs and funding opportunities, visit nyserda.ny.gov or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or Instagram.

About NYPA:

NYPA is the nation's largest state public power organization, through the operation of its 16 generating facilities and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines. 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. More than 70 percent of the electricity NYPA produces is clean renewable hydropower. For more information visit www.nypa.gov and follow us on Twitter @NYPAenergy, Facebook, Instagram, WordPress, and LinkedIn.

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