Since New York City closed the Fresh Kills landfill in 2002 – the largest in the world – the 2200 acres have been turned into a park.
Now, the Staten Island mountain that holds 2 billion tons of garbage deposited there over 53 years, could also be home to solar and wind.
The City is requesting bids for solar and wind on 75 of those acres to build about 20 megawatts (MW), enough energy for about 6000 homes.
The deadline for bids is May 24th and construction will likely start in 2013.
Although it would be a tiny contribution to NYC’s energy demand, which peaked last summer at 13,000 MW, it’s a start.
Longer term, the plan would convert about 250 acres to solar plants, generating electricity for 50,000 homes.
The project is part of Mayor Bloomberg’s ambitious PlaNYC sustainability plan, which targets a 30% reduction in greenhouse gases in NYC by 2030, and spends $2.3 billion to do it.
Since buildings are responsible for 75% of NYC’s emisions, the emphasis is making them more efficient through its Greener, Greater Building program. It’s also creating a non-profit NYC Energy Efficiency Corporation to provide low-cost financing to building owners to make energy efficiency upgrades. It’s funded with $40 million from the federal Recovery Act.
A unique program gives cleantech start-ups a chance to test drive their products that increase energy efficiency in buildings, by offering them for trial runs to landlords.
The impressive, thorough plan is worth taking a look at. As of 2010, volunteers had installed a million square feet of cool roofs on city roofs to counter the heat island effect, and a Green Infrastructure plan to absorb stormwater.
Here’s the PlaNYC website: