Business, Energy Pros Hold Power Summit In Queens
With all eyes then on the bid for Queens to host an Olympic Village for the world’s athletes in Long Island City, and a potential new stadium project for the Mets, community, business leaders and environmentalists held a summit analyzing the impact of increasing demand on the borough and region’s current energy infrastructure.
The Queens Energy Forum took place Friday, June 24 at Queens Borough Hall in Kew Gardens. The event was sponsored by Queens Borough President Helen Marshall, the Queens Chamber of Commerce and the New York Affordable Reliable Electricity Alliance (NY AREA). The forum brought together experts in the field of energy, academia, government, environmental, community and business sectors, to discuss the importance of sustaining an affordable, reliable energy source for the New York metropolitan area and the borough. Participants included representatives from the Queens Borough President’s Office, Queens Chamber of Commerce, the city Department of Small Business Services, Consolidated Edison, Long Island University, the African American Environmentalist Association, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Empire State Development Corporation.
Queens Borough President Helen Marshall said in her opening address: “The future of energy in Queens is dependent on our ability to commit resources to energy conservation, alternative and renewable energy sources and efficiency in production. Our borough already is responsible for turning on more than half the lights in the entire city of New York, and, therefore, we must be aware of the continuing need for a safe, reliable power supply that also is environment-friendly.”
William Egan, Queens Chamber of Commerce executive vice president, added, “Power supply is an increasingly important topic, especially as we approach the summer months. Businesses, not just in Queens County, but throughout New York City, need power to operate and to grow.”
“The average citizen assumes that every time they touch a light switch it will go on and that is not reality. Finding new ways to generate energy in our region, effective conservation measures and preserving what we have is the key to long term dependability and less reliance on foreign energy,” Arthur “Jerry” Kremer, New York AREA chairman, said. “This forum will give us the opportunity to look into a crystal ball and see what our participants think our future holds.” Kremer is former chairman of the Assembly Ways and Means Committee and was an original author of critical state energy citing laws.
The event was part of an ongoing educational effort by New York AREA to highlight important issues regarding New York’s energy supply in the wake of the August 2003 blackout.
Founded in November 2003 after the blackout, New York AREA is a diverse group of more than 60 business, labor and community leaders focused on educating policy makers, businesses and the general public regarding the necessity for safe, reliable energy and the importance of low-cost, reliable, clean electricity. For additional information visit www.area-alliance.org or write NY AREA Alliance, 347 5th Ave., Suite: 508, New York, New York 10016-5010