What is the best way for elected leaders, homeowners and businesses to reduce their energy costs? Renewable energy.

From the recent energy summit, we learned the following ways that New York community members can benefit now and into the future.

• Former Mobil Oil executive Lou Allstadt cited data that definitively showed that renewable energy prices are dropping at a fast pace and fossil fuels are increasing in cost and will only get more expensive.

• He also showed how job growth in renewable energy fields far outpaces fossil fuel-related jobs

• Heating and cooling buildings with geothermal energy will decrease long-term costs for municipalities, businesses and institutions.

• Going green energy now also means that businesses and municipalities will benefit from NYSERDA, PACE, Energize NY and other state programs that offer grants, loans, job training programs, and job development to businesses using renewable energy to lower their operating costs. Not pursuing these opportunities means losing money; pursuing them creates money.

• Community solar farms in our area, such as the one in Laurens promoted by Solstice, and developed by Delaware River Solar,* are dropping the cost of using solar for electricity as homeowners do not have upfront costs for solar panel installation. Sign up for free and you save 10 percent on your electricity bill.

On Tuesday, March 5, show up at Foothills Performing Arts and Civic Center Production Center (brick building)** at 7 p.m. and let our elected officials know that you want renewable energy used in the development of the Oneonta Railyard Project. You may also submit comments online to the city clerk at npowell@oneonta.ny.us. Comments will become part of the Generic Environmental Impact Statement record.

Katherine O’Donnell

Oneonta

Have something to say? Send your letter to letters@thedailystar.com. Letters should be exclusive to this newspaper, contain no more than 300 words and must include a full name, town and phone number. (The number will not be printed.) 

*Changed at 11:44 a.m. to correct the name of the developer.

**Changed at 10:15 a.m. Feb. 28 to correct the location of the meeting.

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