WHITE PLAINS — The New York Power Authority is offering a variety of programs to communities, including Massena, as part of its environmental justice efforts.
“Our Environmental Justice Program is designed to provide underserved communities with educational services and programs that intersect with facilities and strategic operations across the state.”Environmental Justice Vice President Kaela Mainser told NYPA board members last week.
Prior to the environmental justice presentation, trustees were briefed on NYPA’s current efforts.
“So, you’ve heard a lot of information. We’re serious about leveraging all of that expertise for the benefit of the community,” Mainser said. “Joe Kessler (Joseph F. Kessler, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer) mentioned the drone program. We had a drone soccer tournament between NYPA drone pilots and high school students, and now The battle continues, so I think the pilots need a rematch.”
Environmental Justice Manager Matthew Caruso mentioned the programs NYPA hosts in the community. In Massena, NYPA recently held a community day at the Massena Housing Authority in August, capping off a week of environmental justice activities.
Families enjoyed a variety of activities from face painting and inflatables to dunk tanks and free barbecues as part of the Power Authority’s fourth annual event at the Housing Authority. They also enjoyed NYPA’s Energy Xplorer mobile classroom, energy bikes, lawn fishing at Nikandri Nature Center, reptile and clown shows, and more.
Earlier in the week, team members held a two-day science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) camp for rising fourth and fifth graders at Salmon River Center School in Fort Covington, as well as Sessions were also held at the Nature Center and the Police Activities Federation. Massena’s.
Caruso said NYPA-sponsored activities are taking place across New York City, including in New York City public schools.
“Since 2018, we have actually installed and worked with New York City public schools on very high-tech, state-of-the-art hydroponic systems. “We have also worked directly with the parents of students at these schools to support them through other programs we have for adults in the community.”
He said NYPA also holds youth conferences for some students.
“Once a year we really work with all the schools that are part of that network and some of the other schools that are not part of the network. In fact, last year was the first conference we were able to hold in-person due to the pandemic. More than 900 students attended the day-long conference. This was a great opportunity for students to share their experiences. It was a full day event where we were able to speak with industry-leading subject matter experts and present on the research topics that we have been working on with our teachers throughout the year.”
Environmental Justice Manager Alexandra DeRosa also discussed the EV Workforce Development Program offered by NYPA.
“This program will provide NYPA and Canals with donations of retired EV and hybrid vehicles, Level 2 chargers, and insulated hand tools to automotive technology programs across the state. Aims to educate about cars. By 2030, all new passenger vehicles sold in the state must be zero-emissions, and we aim to educate stakeholders about these possible carriers. We want to make sure they are trained,” she said.
DeRosa said it is estimated that less than 2% of automotive service technicians have EV certification.
“So I hope we can help increase that number,” she said. “We recognize the need for an entry-level introductory EV curriculum at the high school level. DOT (Department of Transportation), BOCES (Board of Cooperative Educational Services) have approached us, and we have Together, we are finding ways to support the rollout of the curriculum developed by Capital Region BOCES, which will be delivered to all the schools we work with through this program.”