Silda Wall Spitzer used the backdrop of The Cooper Unions new green academic building to tout a state energy-efficiency initiative.
States first lady is charged up about energy plan
By Jefferson Siegel
New York States first lady, Silda Wall Spitzer, joined George Campbell Jr., president of The Cooper Union, and other officials on Aug. 28 to announce a statewide initiative to reduce energy consumption and fight climate change.
Standing in front of the entrance to Cooper Unions Foundation Building, across Cooper Square from the site where the schools new academic building is rising, Spitzer spoke of legislation she hopes will offer an economic incentive to achieve reduced energy consumption and help achieve higher standards for environmental sustainability.
The Spitzer 15-x-15 plan calls for a 15 percent reduction in the states overall energy use from forecasted levels by the year 2015 through new energy-efficiency programs intended to reduce energy bills, greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollution. Silda Spitzer plans to make energy efficiency her personal campaign, similar to what Hillary Clinton did with healthcare when she was first lady.
The new Cooper Union building will house the Albert Nerken School of Engineering and the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, along with additional facilities for the School of Art and the Irwin S. Chanin School of Architecture.
Designed by architect Thom Mayne, winner of the Pritzker Prize, the nine-story, 175,000-square-foot building will replace more than 40 percent of the academic space at the college.
Built to gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) green building rating system standards, it will be the citys first LEED-certified academic building.
Construction started in November 2006 and is scheduled to be completed on Feb. 12, 2009, Peter Coopers 218th birthday.