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Cuomo announces $5 million towards third round of clean energy competition

Colleges and universities can receive funding to decrease their carbon footprint, reduce energy use and help their campus and communities
Credit: WGRZ

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's Energy to Lead competition will enter its' third round with $5 million to go towards colleges and universities with green initiatives in 2020. 

Two and four-year higher education institutions can receive awards from $500,000 to $1.5 million for projects that lower the use or environmental impact of energy both on campuses and in their communities. 

"New York is a leader in the fight against climate change, and through initiatives like Energy to Lead, we are empowering our colleges and universities to establish best-in-class energy efficient clean energy policies for others to follow," Governor Cuomo said in a press release. 

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The first two rounds of the Energy to Lead competition brought approximately $6 million to colleges and universities with green energy programs. 

The University at Buffalo was one of the first six recipients, for their project "Localizing Buffalo's Renewable Energy Future," which will install solar power throughout Buffalo. 

To be considered, institutions must already be part of the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority's (NYSERDA) REV Campus Challenge, which encourages and drives colleges making progress towards clean energy. 

NYSERDA will award up to $5 million, ranging from $500,000 and $1.5 million per award. Winning proposals will highlight cost-effective, deep and impactful energy savings projects leading to decarbonization. Proposals will also integrate student engagement and share best practices with other campuses to encourage replication.

Proposals for the program typically show energy-reducing initiatives for campuses and/or communities that will have a deeply felt impact, includes students in the process and could become something modeled after at other schools. 

"The Energy to Lead Competition provides colleges and universities with funding to develop innovative clean energy projects in their communities," said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. "We're incentivizing clean energy innovation to create more jobs and opportunities through the state to ensure a cleaner environment and stronger economy for future generations."

Proposals to the 2020 program are due by February 20, 2020, by 3 p.m.