Greening & Weatherization

HDFC Greening Project

If you are a property owner or board member of a low income cooperative, contact Alex Lee to find out what types of free and low cost greening programs your building may be eligible for.

Since the Fall of 2011, the Cooper Square Committee has been working with low income housing providers such as the Cooper Square Mutual Housing Association, HDFC coop boards, and project based Section 8 owners, to make their buildings more energy efficient.  The Cooper Square Committee partners with the Northern Manhattan Improvement Corporation (NMIC)  which administers the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) and Empower NY Program in Manhattan. Our staff expedites the process by doing outreach directly to buildings and collecting WAP and EmPower NY applications from shareholders and renters in each building, 

WAP assists any building in which at least 50% of the households are low income (earning less than 60% of the area median income), and provides them with some or all of the following services:

New energy efficient windows

New Boilers

New hot water heaters

Insulation of roof cavities

Insulation of pipes

New energy star refrigerators and stoves

Florescent light bulbs

Energy smart power strips to reduce electricity usage

The EmPower New York program provides apartments with energy efficiency improvements including new energy star refrigerators and florescent light bulbs, but does not provide major building systems such as windows and boilers.

To date, Cooper Square Committee has enrolled 19 low income cooperatives and rental buildings, comprising 22 buildings and 315 apartments, and the WAP and EmPower NY Programs have carried out energy efficiency improvements totaling over $1,000,000. The average building receives several thousand dollars per apartment in energy efficiency improvements, and buildings often achieve a reduction in their fuel (oil or gas) usage and heating bills of anywhere from 10% to as much as 50% in a couple of cases. Residents often see significant reductions in their electric bills after installing LED bulbs.   

If you are a property owner or board member of a low income cooperative, contact Alex Lee at 212-228-8210 to find out what types of free and low cost greening programs your building may be eligible for if the shareholders and/or tenants are income eligible.

Go Green Lower East Side (GGLES)

We are carrying out our HDFC Greening Project as part of a Go Green Lower East Side (GGLES) Initiative started by Manhattan Borough President, Scott Stringer in 2009.  The initiative involves partnerships among numerous non-profit organizations to promote energy conservation by property owners, residents and businesses, as well as recycling, composting and other green best practices by area residents.  In 2011, Fourth Arts Block (FAB), proposed a model block greening initiative targeting East 4th Street because of its unique concentration of non-profit cultural groups and low income housing managed by the Cooper Square MHA.  With strong buy in by property owners and businesses, a number of greening initiatives have begun, such as the following:

White Roofs: Since August, 2011, the roofs of 10 buildings on East 4th Street were painted white thanks to efforts by FAB, the White Roof Project and NYC Cool Roofs. www.boweryboogie.com/2011/08/scott-stringer-enlists-community-volunteeers-to-paint-rooftops/

Greening Small Businesses: EcoBiz is conducting energy efficiency trainings for small business owners every Friday morning at the Cooper Square Committee office.

Recycling: GrowNYC has done trainings for the Cooper Square MHA’s maintenance staff to improve the recycling rate at the 22 buildings it manages.

New Greening Initiative On The Way

The Con Edison Settlment Fund Committee of Community Board 3 voted on Thursday, Jan. 5th to approve a $65,000 proposal we submitted in November.  We plan to outreach to at least two dozen low income cooperatives (HDFCs) near the East 14th Street Con Ed plant, and assist them with applying for NYS Weatherization funds and EmPower New York funds available to make their buildings more energy efficient and reduce their heating and air conditioning costs.

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