Eco-Grid

Eco-Grid is a non-profit organization in Hudson, NY whose mission is to provide technical, outreach and management leadership for the development of a system of renewable energy in Hudson. They signed a 12-month contract with NYSERDA in June of 2007, which was to fund a major feasibility study of district energy in Hudson. District energy is the production of steam, hot or chilled water, or any combination of the three, at one central utility plant for distribution to other buildings through a network of pipes. Eco-Grid believes Hudson is the ideal place to be located because of its compact grid layout. Eco-Grid has a large amount of community support, and has received letters of endorsement from many different sects of public and private life in Hudson and Columbia County.

Their plan includes a marketing analysis of energy customers in Hudson/Greenport, site selection analysis, emissions estimation, exploration of biomass availability and sourcing options, comparison of different distributed-generation options, and preliminary engineering design of a piping network to distribute hot water. According to a write-up by NYSERDA, a sustainable-energy 5MW CHP/heating and cooling system could consist of a biomass-fired, cogeneration plant with fuel from clean wood residues and locally grown energy crops (in addition to other elements). CHP is Combined Heat and Power, or cogeneration. According to NYSERDA, a 5MW biomass-fired plant would require about 35,000 tons of wood chips a year in order to produce hot water for district heating and 18 million kwh of electricity. The plan would generally be operated in a thermal-following mode, but could be ramped up to full electric power production if necessary.

As of May, 2008, they had nearly completed a city-wide heat load analysis, and have successfully obtained at least two years of primary energy consumption of heating/cooling and electricity usage for all city and county buildings, the hospital, prison, and large manufacturing facilities, in addition to other buildings. Eco-Grid, along with Mesa Reduction Engineering and the Cornell Agro-Forestry Center of Greene County, has produced a draft wood biomass-availability study within a 50-mile radius of Hudson. Contact is Maria Miller (p: 518-567-9142, e: maria@eco-grid.org).

Last updated May 23, 2015