Town of Ossining Cuts Ribbon on Clean Heating and Cooling Upgrade at Cedar Lane Arts Center

(left to right) Alban Sylaj, Town of Ossining Parks Groundskeeper; Victoria Cafarelli, Town of Ossining Budget Director; Victoria Gearity, Communications Director for Senator Elijah Reichlin-Melnick; Assemblywoman Sandy Galef; Mario Velardo, Town of Ossining Parks Foreman; Dana Levenberg, Town of Ossining Supervisor; Marcus DaSilva, Town of Ossining Food Scraps Recycling Program; Suzie Ross, Green Ossining Chairperson; Mitzi Elkes, Town of Ossining Environmental Advisory Committee Chairperson; and Lauren Brois, Program Director of EnergySmart Homes, Sustainable Westchester.

Local and state officials along with town staff, held a ribbon cutting to highlight recently installed clean heating and cooling upgrades at the Cedar Lane Arts Center Building in Cedar Lane Park. An Air Source Heat Pump was installed, and the electrical capacity of the building was upgraded as part of this project. These improvements were funded by a $40,000 grant from NYSERDA’s Clean Energy Communities program, which the Town earned for implementing high-impact clean energy actions and spearheading two community campaigns in partnership with Sustainable Westchester, EnergySmart Homes and GridRewards.

“Cedar Lane Park is already the home to so many of the Town’s sustainability initiatives, including the Food Scrap Recycling Program, EV charging station, and Ossining’s Organic Community Garden, not to mention thriving art programs,” said Ossining Town Supervisor Dana Levenberg. “We are so pleased to continue to be a leader on environmental initiatives and showcase to the community how easy clean heating and cooling upgrades can be, as part of a critical effort to reduce our reliance on fossil fuels.”

“Sustainable Westchester is proud to have assisted the Town of Ossining on their Clean Energy Communities campaigns for EnergySmart Homes, Community Solar and GridRewards,” said Lauren Brois, Program Director of EnergySmart Homes with Sustainable Westchester. “The Town delivered informative educational campaigns that not only helped residents to reduce their energy usage and cut greenhouse gas emissions but also earned the Town $15,000 in grant funding. Now the good news continues with the installation of the air source heat pump at the Cedar Lane Arts Center! This new heat pump is another example of the Town of Ossining’s sustainability leadership. Congratulations!”

The Town of Ossining has been benchmarking energy use at its buildings since 2016, so the efficacy of these upgrades can be monitored over time. The expanded electrical capacity at the building will also allow the Town to consider future energy efficiency upgrades.

Ossining also recently reaffirmed its commitment to meeting the goals of New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act by resolution, and this project moves the Town closer to those goals. “As of 2021, 32% of New York’s greenhouse gas (GHg) emissions causing climate breakdown are from buildings, surpassing transportation (28%) slightly. With the 2019 passage of New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (The Climate Act), leading initiatives like this show how municipalities can contribute to supporting the new law’s GHg emission reduction goals to help stave off the worst effects of climate change. With Cedar Lane Park home to our food scraps recycling program, our organic community garden, an EV charging station, an arts/culture program, green open space, and now a community building with air source heat pumps, it is quickly becoming a showcase for green initiatives that benefit our environment and public health, while reducing our resource use. I applaud Supervisor Levenberg and the Town of Ossining for taking advantage of this NYSERDA grant opportunity to make Cedar Lane Arts Center a model of how municipal buildings can be retrofitted,” said Suzie Ross, Chairperson/Co-Founder, Green Ossining and Co-Chair/Co-Founder, Climate Reality Project – Westchester Chapter.

Ossining residents can learn more about programming at the Cedar Lane Arts Center on the Ossining Recreation Community Pass Catalog, and get started recycling their food scraps at home by visiting the Ossining Composts website.

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