Supervisor Kate Murray recently discussed the role of government in green energy initiatives at the Sustainability Institutes at Molloy College’s Solar Policy conference.
“As our town focuses on solar energy and all of its renewable energy projects, I reflect upon the popular proverb that states, ‘We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.’ Few statements capture our responsibility as stewards of the planet like that quote, said Supervisor Murray”
Murray added how governments like Hempstead Town have a threefold role: To educate, to demonstrate and to research. It is vital to promote the education of young people on the importance of sustainable energy and the role it can play in our lives. In addition, government must demonstrate that new technology is viable and can be incorporated into the energy scheme in an effective and practical way. Lastly, municipal leaders must advance research, fostering an environment that encourages the discovery of new technologies and applications.
“If government doesn’t lead by example, we will be confronted with very unattractive alternatives to meet our energy needs in a few short years,” added Supervisor Murray. “We owe it to our children and our children’s children to ensure a healthy environment.”
Hempstead Town is home to Long Island’s first fully solar powered municipal building as well as Long Island’s first and only renewable energy park in Point Lookout, which features solar, wind, hydrogen and geothermal energy. The energy park is home to a solar and wind-powered shellfish nursery, a self-reliant solar office acquired from NYIT, a 60k solar field, solar trackers (two solar panels that track the sun’s path), Long Island’s first hydrogen fueling station and wind turbine. In addition, the Town of Hempstead is completing a 20k solar panel system at the Conservation and Waterways facility in Point Lookout with a hydroponics garden in the filtered light of the bi-facial panels. Two solar carports are also being added to our first solar-electric car charging station in Point Lookout.
Educating residents and young people is a vital component of the Town of Hempstead’s energy agenda. Solar how-to seminars hosted by Hempstead Town show homeowners how they can incorporate solar energy into their daily lives. Schools and organizations alike are always welcomed to tour the energy park in Point Lookout and receive a hands-on program offering a view into potential energy.
Supervisor Murray addressed how Hempstead Town continues to expand its alliances and partnerships with local universities and colleges to further its green energy research. Other cutting edge research includes new geothermal wells Hempstead Town is installing at town facilities for cooling and heating as well as the development of an overall energy strategy for the town.
“Events like this help to promote and advance technological alliances and move progressive energy initiatives forwards,” concluded Supervisor Murray. “I’m appreciative that Hempstead Town was a part of such a worthwhile event.”