Mayor Pushes Environmentally-Friendly Economy

October 23, 2009 Updated: October 23, 2009

NEW YORK—A green economy used to mean one that’s making a lot of money—not anymore. A new initiative to support and attract environmentally-friendly businesses, being touted as a “green economy” and “green jobs,” was announced by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg on Thursday.

“We hear a lot about the potential of green jobs as a driver of future economic growth, but often the rhetoric is not matched with a real plan to capitalize on opportunities,” said Mayor Bloomberg.

The city estimates that the 30 initiatives that make up the plan will support the creation of 13,000 new jobs, doubling what it calls the “green sector workforce.”

Many of the green jobs are expected to be involved in making buildings green, which means making them more energy efficient, using less environmentally detrimental materials, and using renewable resources through sources such as solar panels. The jobs would also work on making neighborhoods similarly more energy efficient.

The city is investing more than $7.5 million to implement the initiatives while also leveraging existing city, state and federal stimulus funds.

One example of an initiative is a giant solar panel planned for the Brooklyn Army Terminal in Sunset Park. The city is commissioning the panel in order to spur local green jobs and show the viability of solar panels to the private sector.

“The system is estimated to generate up to 750,000 kilowatt hours of energy—that’s enough energy to power 150 city households, annually. Additionally, the system would save the city up to $120,000 in annual electricity costs,” according to press release from the mayor.