Alternate Energy and Energy Efficiency

The Dutchess County Environmental Council has a growing interest in moving our community toward a broader use of alternative energy and improving the efficient use of natural resources. To that end, we offer this outline for further investigation and exploration of the possible ways to go.

Closest to home is our own Dutchess County Cooperative Extension is an excellent place to start exploring Renewable Energy Resources.

Renewable Energy

Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard – New York is one of 29 states using a renewable portfolio standard to drive a transition to renewable sources of electricity. This standard requires 30 percent of the state’s electricity to be supplied from renewable energy sources by 2015 and provides financial incentives to support development of renewable energy sources. The renewable energy portfolio standard has supported 39 large scale renewable projects, and additional funding has been authorized for future projects.

The Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy (DSIRE) provides an excellent place to find means of moving toward New York State Goals.

The New York Department of Environmental Conservation offers two sites for information on Climate Programs and Renewable Energy and are worth exploring in detail.

Net Metering – Net metering allows electricity customers with qualified renewable energy systems to sell excess electricity back to a local utility — homes, businesses, farms and institutions can receive credit from their power suppliers for excess electricity generated by photovoltaics, wind, biomass, fuel cells, anaerobic digestion, small hydroelectric and microturbines. Net metering makes it easier for residences and businesses to use renewable technology and encourages new distributed generation facilities. Recently, the state legislature expanded net metering to include larger solar installations and electricity generated from wind and farm waste and increased the amount of energy that utilities are required to buy back.

NY Sun – The NY Sun Act provides administrative flexibility to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and other New York State energy agencies and authorities to design the most cost-effective programs and to respond to changing market conditions. NY-Sun includes a solar jobs program to bolster the use of solar power in New York, while also protecting the ratepayer. The NY-Sun program is authorized through 2015, and Governor Cuomo has proposed to extend it through 2023 at the existing annual funding levels.

Solar Installation Incentives – The NY-Sun Solar PV program offers incentives to reduce the installation costs of solar PV for both residential and commercial customers. See NY-Sun Solar PV Incentive Program for incentive information and a solar PV clean power cost estimator. NYSERDA also offers incentives for heating water with the sun. (Solar Hot Water link)

NYSERDA Energy Efficiency & Renewable Programs

NYSERDA offers a wide range of programs to help residents and businesses across New York State become more energy efficient. Learn more about our Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Programs  [PDF]

NYSERDA Energy Efficiency & Renewable Programs

NYSERDA offers a wide range of programs to help residents and businesses across New York State become more energy efficient. Learn more about our Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Programs  [PDF]

  • Commercial Industrial
    Provides clean energy studies and efficiency services for new and existing facilities and manufacturing.
  • Residential
    NYSERDA’s residential programs help homeowners and renters reduce their energy costs through incentives and low-interest loans.
  • Economic Recovery
    Information on the full range of federal and state energy-related economic recovery programs will be available at this site. NYSERDA provides this information as a service to help New Yorkers take advantage of the opportunities offered by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009.
  • Multifamily Homes
    This program addresses the needs of the multifamily sector by working with developers, building owners and representatives to improve the energy efficiency, health, safety, and security of the residential buildings with five (5) or more residential units in a cost effective manner.
  • Renewables
    Using renewable sources of energy helps reduce emissions and dependence on fossil fuels. NYSERDA supports the use of renewable energy and the development of next-generation renewable energy technologies, including biomass, wind, solar electric (PV), solar thermal (hot water), and geothermal heating and cooling.
  • Green Jobs-Green NY
    A statewide program to promote energy efficiency and the installation of clean technologies to reduce energy costs and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The program will support sustainable community development and create opportunities for green jobs. This program is administered by NYSERDA.
  • Economic Development Growth Extension (EDGE)
    EDGE offers local, convenient, community-based access to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) energy-efficiency and research and development (R&D) programs.
  • Renewable Portfolio Standard
    A Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) is a policy that seeks to increase the proportion of renewable electricity used by retail customers. New York has adopted an aggressive goal of obtaining 30 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2015 – referred to as 30 x15.

Links to Federal Information

NREL National Renewable Energy Lab

Federal Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

US Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy



Welcome to the Dutchess EMC’s Website!
The Environmental Management Council (EMC) is Dutchess County’s official citizen advisory board on matters that affect the local natural environment.  The primary mission of the EMC is to advise Dutchess County officials on matters affecting the preservation and sustainable use of the natural resources in Dutchess County, and help to raise awareness of the public about local environmental issues.

Get Involved with Protecting YOUR Local Environment
So the saying Goes:  “Think Globally – Act Locally.”  Dutchess County, located in the beautiful Hudson Valley region of New York State, is home to rolling hills, meandering streams, bountiful drinking water supplies, fertile agricultural lands, and a mild climate.  In order to protect these precious natural resources, the EMC works to raise understanding of members of the public and works to help elected officials put more sustainable policies in place.

Learn how to Get Involved or Contact Us to bring a local issue of concern to our attention.  EMC volunteer members work closely with the professional staff of CCEDC’s Environment and Energy Program to accomplish their work.  The current Membership of the EMC includes at-large, ex-officio and CAC members – find out how to submit your application for an opening on the Council.

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This site was created for the EMC by the CCEDC Environment and Energy Program
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