Three Day Summit Explored the Benefits of Energy Efficiency Lending, Carbon Neutrality and Pushing Accessibility for Sustainability across New York
February 1, 2021— The Community Preservation Corporation (CPC) partnered with the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to host a three-day Carbon Neutral Summit to explore the opportunities and challenges of building decarbonization in January 2021. The goals of the Summit were to introduce carbon neutrality in the built environment to a broad group of stakeholders, to highlight NYSERDA’s ongoing commitment to a zero emissions electricity sector by 2040, and to focus on solutions stakeholders can utilize to decarbonize their buildings within their respective fields. Materials from each day can be found here, including speaker slides and session recordings.
“Whether its driven by new laws and regulations, a need to improve building economics, or to improve affordability and sustainability – the multifamily industry is headed toward decarbonization,” said Sadie McKeown, CPC’s Executive Vice President and Head of Construction Lending and Initiatives. “Our three-day summit provided attendees from across the real estate industry with knowledge and tools to better understand the challenges and opportunities of sustainable development and portfolio management. My thanks to Janet Joseph and our partners at NYSERDA, to Dr. Jonathan Foley, and to Commissioner Visnauskas and her team at HCR for their dedication to fostering real change within the industry.”
NYSERDA Senior Vice President for Strategy and Market Development, Janet Joseph said, “As we accelerate toward Governor Cuomo’s ambitious goal of a carbon neutral building stock it is crucial that we ensure that we have affordable housing that creates better living spaces and stronger communities, while improving environmental quality. I would like to thank the Community Preservation Corporation for their work to realize such a successful and well attended inaugural event and continued partnership to build both sustainable and affordable housing.
HCR Commissioner RuthAnne Visnauskas said, “Through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, Governor Cuomo has put us on the path to reducing greenhouse gas emissions 85 percent by the year 2050, making New York a national leader in efforts to combat climate change. HCR is proud to work with NYSERDA, CPC, and our partners in the development community to support these goals by making our existing housing stock and environment cleaner, greener, and more sustainable. The three-day Carbon Neutral Summit was an important step that brought together government and industry stakeholders who offered the resources and expertise needed to help our partners meet New York’s ambitious decarbonization goals.”
Highlights from the Summit include:
- Day 1, January 13, 2020: Dr. Jonathan Foley, Executive Director, from Project Drawdown provided the keynote address to kick off Day 1 of the Summit. The first day focused on carbon neutrality and was split into three sessions: Climate Action in New York City and New York State, Prioritizing Climate Justice, and Strategies for Building Decarbonization.
- Day 2, January 21, 2020: The second day focused on portfolio management and discussed the strategies to retrofit existing buildings. It was broken down into the following three sessions: Portfolio Optimization, NYSERDA’s Empire Building Challenge, and NYC Accelerator/NYC Carbon Challenge. Janet Joseph, SVP for Strategy and Market Development, at NYSERDA was featured as the keynote speaker and asked attendees to start thinking about their next steps to decarbonize their building portfolios. Janet’s call to action included highlights of NYSERDA’s program offerings to assist attendees.
- Day 3, January 27, 2020: The final day of CPC’s summit featured a session on Multifamily Developers Choosing High-Performance, Saving Energy and Reducing Carbon through Downtown Revitalization, and CPC’s Financing High Performance guide with keynote speaker RuthAnne Visnauskas, CEO/Commissioner of HCR. Commissioner Visnauskas closed the Summit by highlighting the key points through the 3-day event and put a spotlight on the ongoing work happening at the State level.
About CPC’s Sustainability Practice
CPC’s sustainability platform promotes energy and water conservation measures to improve the financial and physical quality of the buildings and communities in which we live and work. Since 2013, CPC has financed over 8,500 energy efficiency units statewide and has created tools and resources to help their customers and partners move towards a clean energy economy.
Leading by Example: Given the influence a lender can have on the economics and the condition of the building stock, CPC seeks environmental and social sustainability in all of its endeavors. CPC wrote the book on underwriting efficiency: the Underwriting Efficiency handbook is the industry-leading guide to this practice. In addition, CPC’s Financing High-Performance guide is a resource for all multifamily building stakeholders that demonstrates the practical benefits of designing, financing, building, and maintaining high-performance new construction, as well as the non-energy benefits that add value to the physical asset and to the lives of the tenants and communities it serves. Additionally, CPC is also one of the first real estate nonprofits to achieve carbon neutral operations, achieving carbon neutrality as of 2020.
Knowledge Sharing: To add value to the market and support the adoption of increased environmental and economic sustainability, CPC has created a variety of publicly available resources for the multifamily ecosystem. CPC collaborates frequently with industry peers to develop free industry resources to support energy efficiency efforts for multifamily lenders, owners and developers, appraisers, and others in the multifamily ecosystem. Select tools and resources can be found here.
Industry Collaboration: CPC works closely with government agencies, local community groups, housing developers, financial institutions, and other affordable housing stakeholders to advance our shared commitment of healthy, energy efficient, low carbon multifamily housing. Information on these partnerships, along with additional background on CPC’s sustainability initiative, can be found here.
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About The Community Preservation Corporation (CPC)
Established in 1974, CPC is a nonprofit affordable housing and community revitalization finance company that believes housing is central to transforming underserved neighborhoods into thriving and vibrant communities. The company, which currently carries a AA- issuer rating from S&P Global, provides a full suite of capital products through its construction lending, Agency lending, and equity investing platforms. Since inception, CPC has provided more than $11.5 billion to finance nearly 200,000 units of housing, and is currently one of the largest Community Development Financial Institutions in the country dedicated to investing in multifamily housing. Visit CPC at communityp.com, and on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
NYSERDA, a public benefit corporation, offers objective information and analysis, innovative programs, technical expertise, and funding to help New Yorkers increase energy efficiency, save money, use renewable energy, and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. NYSERDA professionals work to protect the environment and create clean-energy jobs. NYSERDA has been developing partnerships to advance innovative energy solutions in New York State since 1975. To learn more about NYSERDA’s programs and funding opportunities, visit nyserda.ny.gov or follow us on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, or Instagram.