With the help of a new rooftop solar panel installation at Thomas A. Edison Career and Technical Education High School in Jamaica Hills, Queens, New York City’s Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) and Department of Education (DOE) announced that the city has achieved a key milestone in generating solar powered clean energy.
The rooftop installation at the school and other city properties will generate 16 megawatts (MW) of solar power annually – enough electricity to power 2,600 homes each year. The installation at Thomas A. Edison high school alone will generate 579 kilowatts (kW) of electricity, enough to offset 65% of the school’s electrical use. The installation will also serve as an educational tool for students to learn about green energy alternatives, climate change and careers in the solar industry.
“Solar installations on our public schools help the City reduce emissions while providing valuable learning opportunities for students,” said NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Dawn M. Pinnock. “New York City is leading the way by generating clean energy on City properties and is on target to reduce emissions from government operations 50% by 2030.”
The solar panels at Thomas A. Edison high school are now one of 60 such installations located at NYC public schools. With this addition, NYC now receives a collective 75% of its solar energy from installations on public school facilities.
“The success of the City’s clean energy goals is heavily reliant on our schools for large-scale installation of solar arrays on DOE buildings, as well as the availability of options and opportunities to teach, train, and support our students and educators in climate action and education,” said John Shea, Chief Executive Officer of the NYC Department of Education’s Division of School Facilities. “We are motivated by the scale of this opportunity to have NYC school communities and buildings help to make a positive and sustainable impact.”
Through NYC’s DOE’s Office of Sustainability’s NYC Solar School programs, young people across the city can receive free professional learning and development opportunities in partnership with the non-profit Solar One. Solar One delivers participating schools the curriculum and technical instruction and infrastructure to help interested students gain footing in the clean energy field, as well as work-based learning opportunities.
“When a young person graduates from a New York City public school they should have the skills and experience needed to get a good job and be a part of revitalizing our city,” said Schools Chancellor David Banks. “Programs like the Solar CTE program not only set our students up for lifelong achievement, but engage them in being the creators of a greener, more sustainable New York City.”
Solar installations across the city on city-owned properties will help NYC reach its goal of reducing emissions from city government operated institutions by a projected 40% by 2025 and 50% by 2030.