TOMPKINS COUNTY, N.Y.—The Cornell Cooperative Extension in Tompkins County was one of four Cooperative Extension locations chosen to “lead statewide efforts to establish a network of Regional Clean Energy Hubs” according to an announcement from the extension last week.
Tompkins County’s CCE was chosen by NYSERDA along with ones in Oneida County, Dutchess County and Nassau County, with other agencies chosen to lead the effort in their respective regions in the state. CCE of Tompkins County was given $3.5 million.
“By making clean-energy programs more accessible and efficient, we are helping residents of disadvantaged communities’ access and benefit from the opportunities provided by New York’s clean energy transition,” said Karim Beers, the senior resource educator at CCE Tompkins County, according to an announcement.
CCE’s overall goal is to connect the community to Cornell’s agriculture/environmental research efforts, and strengthening the connection between policy-makers and those on the frontlines of clean energy initiatives seems to be a priority for them with the new funding.
According to the announcement, each hub is receiving funding that will be used to “create education and outreach programming to ensure equitable access to clean energy services.” The state’s interest, and its $52 million investment statewide, is that the money will be used to push the state toward its climate goals, particularly those outlined in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.
“The Regional Clean Energy Hubs will connect the dots for New Yorkers who are seeking resources to reduce energy costs, make their homes more energy efficient, participate in clean energy job training or apply for new jobs,” said NYSERDA President Doreen Harris. “The Hubs will also be critical in engaging with local communities to address any existing barriers faced when accessing the programs to ensure all New Yorkers are involved and can fully participate in a green economy.”