New York slates $160 million to further expand renewables

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New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has announced a $160 million investment plan to boost large scale clean energy projects across the state.

As part of the state’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) strategy, the new funding will target public-private sector partnerships in clean energy projects.

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) will administer the funding for the new grid-based projects on a competitive basis with the aim of improving energy affordability and reliability while also expanding new economic development opportunities and protecting the environment.

"This funding is a crucial resource for the development of New York’s clean energy infrastructure, and by supporting large scale projects we are ensuring that the grid can meet the needs of a growing economy,” Cuomo said.

"Investing in these kinds of projects is another example of how we are building a cleaner and more sustainable future in New York State, and I look forward to seeing that progress unfold in the years ahead."

In addition to large-scale solar installations, the REV funding will support significant private investment in renewable energy sources such as wind farms, fuel cells, biomass facilities, renewable biogas and the upgrading of small to medium-sized hydropower projects that provide power to the electric grid.

Contracts for projects will be awarded for a term of up to 20 years. For the first time ever, fuel cell projects will also be eligible for 20-year contracts.

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NYSERDA will support the projects through the Main Tier of the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), New York’s primary policy to promote the development of new large-scale renewable energy resources.

For every $1 invested in RPS Main Tier projects, New York realizes $3 in economic benefits, according to NYSERDA, which expects more than $3 billion of direct investment in the state as a result of existing Main Tier projects in the form of jobs, payments to public entities, in-state purchase of goods and services and land leases.

NYSERDA’s previous nine RPS Main Tier solicitations for large-scale renewable projects have resulted in approximately 2,036 MW of installed capacity from 65 projects that, once operational, will generate more than 5 million megawatt hours of renewable energy annually. Another Main Tier solicitation is set to launch in 2016.

New York State Energy and Finance Chairman Richard Kauffman said, "While we envision a more localized power grid in the future, it is imperative we ensure our large-scale generation sources are as clean as possible. With certainty and transparency, New York State is establishing itself as an attractive environment for private developers to invest and create new jobs in the state’s growing clean economy."

Details about the solicitation process is available here.

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