On December 6th & 7th the Legislative Office Building was abuzz with talk of building New York's Healthy Economy and Environment. Led by Clean and Healthy New York, this two-day conference highlighted successes in making financial sound, and environmentally- and health- protective changes in academia, schools, businesses and the public sector. The 8th annual NYS Environmental Excellence Awards were presented as part of the conference.
The Keynote address was given by David Calligeros, Founder of Remains Lighting, which has developed an innovative factory in Brooklyn, NY. A former Environmental Excellence Award winner, David focused on the simple decisions his company made that saved money from the start - shades and fans instead of an HVAC system for a company that uses heat-producing machinery.
He highlighted some choices that have longer-term payoffs: A roof that's green - both because of the plants that reduce storm water run-off and because of the solar panels that provide the factory's electricity needs. Though the pay-off term was fairly long, David said, "I basically paid for nine years of electricity up front." After that, the system will provide electricity with minimal cost.