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“At the Fairview, a 424-unit co-op in Forest Hills, Queens, the nine-member board has tackled a staggering litany of capital projects – most of which were supported by grants and will reduce  the co-op’s energy expenses and its carbon footprint. As an added bonus, the projects will largely pay for themselves over time – without maintenance increases or assessments. These include installing solar panels, switching to dual-fuel boilers, upgrading the air-conditioning system, repairing all six elevators, installing LED lights in all common areas, and installing a Combined Heat and Power, or cogen, system that reduces the energy bill and provides backup power in the event of a blackout.

… After hiring an energy consultant to perform an audit of the building’s systems, the board secured a $1.5 million low-interest loan from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), which allowed the board to install new burners and convert the two boilers to dual-fuel (No. 2 oil and natural gas). The cost of firing the boilers was cut by a third, and some of the savings went toward replacing the mechanicals and the cab interiors of the co-op’s six balky elevators.

The board hired the energy services company En-Power Group to oversee its future projects. Mike Scorrano, the company’s managing director, was immediately impressed by the board’s vision. ‘The good thing about this board is that two people were very gung-ho about energy projects,’ Scorrano says. ‘Greg Carlson wants to help shareholders save energy and money. And board president Hank Moskowitz took the long-term view, convincing other people on the board that these investments were money well spent. A lot of boards just want to maintain the status quo.’”

 

To read the full March 28, 2018 article in Habitat >>>> click here