Big Green Beacon in New York

Timlynn Babitsky | Stepping up | Friday, January 14th, 2011

by Timlynn Babitsky
Soaring 1,454 feet above Midtown Manhattan, the Empire State Building is the “World’s Most Famous Office Building.” On January 6, 2011, it also became one of the “greenest.”

Currently undergoing a $550 million renovation to transform the building into a more energy efficient and eco-friendly structure, the Empire State Building has just become the largest commercial purchaser of 100% renewable energy. This month it signed a contract with Green Mountain Energy Company to purchase nearly 55 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of renewable energy annually.

This is more than double the amount of renewable power purchased by any other commercial customer in New York City! Once again the Empire State “Lady” stands head and shoulders above her peers.

The renewable energy to supply the Empire State Building will be purchased as wind Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) from Green Mountain’s parent company, NRG Energy. Purchasing RECs supports renewable energy directly when it cannot be purchased directly from a producer.

By purchasing RECs in the same quantity of electricity consumed by the Empire State Building the amount of energy used by the building is added to the U.S. power grid directly from renewable sources. This ensures support for the further development of renewable energy projects. Purchasing RECs is a great way to “go green” when green energy supplies can’t come directly to you.

Named by the American Society of Civil Engineers as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World, the Empire State Building is well on the way to becoming a Big Green Beacon on the renewables scene.
To read more, click here. To take a tour of the Empire State Building, click here.

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