Prepare for Heating Season with Community Retrofit NYC

In preparation for the fall heating season, BlocPower’s Community Retrofit NYC team has been all over Brooklyn this summer helping building owners and contractors prepare. The team canvassed weekly throughout East New York, Bed Stuy, and Bushwick meeting nearly 200 new building owners along the way. Whether installing a new boiler, upgrading a thermostat, or navigating the vast world of government incentive programs, the Community Retrofit team is eager to tackle the complex problems facing New York City’s building owners.

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Margarget Smith + Tyler

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Our team collaborated with Brooklyn Assemblywoman Latrice Walker to host an event on July 27th for building owners at Marion Hopkinson playground in Bed Stuy. We met 23 new building owners who were connected with our free energy assessments and consulting services. These building owners were able to access a wide variety of services from our partner organizations including free LED lighting from Con Edison, free low flow water fixtures from National Grid, and the Green Housing Preservation Program.

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On August 10th we hosted a contractor training event to educate contractors about energy efficiency and help them expand the scope of their business. We brought in industry experts including Grundfos, Rathe Associates, and Venco to discuss new building technologies and energy efficiency best practices. This event helped grow our pool of qualified and experienced contractors to assist our clients with retrofit projects.

 

As the fall heating season approaches, Community Retrofit NYC is here to help! Contact us to learn more about the free services available for your building(s) at info@communityretrofit.org or 347-762-4792. 

Behind The Scenes: Two Journeys Collide, A BlocPower Love Affair

Just like a love journey, the energy industry is full of exciting challenges. My journey began studying energy engineering. I saw many problems in the energy industry: climate change, underserved communities, and wasted resources. Over time I began to question how I would make this business more sustainable and pursued an MBA degree at Brandeis University. I then met BlocPower and settled down as an Investment Associate, where I help solve access to capital issues within the energy industry. Continue reading Behind The Scenes: Two Journeys Collide, A BlocPower Love Affair

Power to the People at Smart Cities NYC ’17

Look for BlocPower at the SmartImage uploaded from iOS (1) Cities NYC’17 conference this week. Don’t miss our CEO, Donnel Baird, on the “Power to the People” panel in Duggal I at 3:30pm on Thursday, May 4. And make sure to stop by and say hi to us at the Urbantech NYC booth inside the Duggal Greenhouse (10-11am on Thursday, May 4 and 12-1pm on Friday, May 5). Continue reading Power to the People at Smart Cities NYC ’17

Philadelphia Energy Authority looks to BlocPower’s business model while leveraging $1 billion in energy efficiency investments

The Philadelphia Energy Campaign is leveraging $1 billion in public and private investment in energy efficiency and clean energy projects over the next 10 years. The Philadelphia Energy Authority is looking to BlocPower’s business model and success in New York City to inform their strategy as they develop the Philadelphia Energy Campaign and aim to create 10,000 jobs and return $200 million in cost savings to the local economy. Hear BlocPower CEO, Donnel Baird, speak with Katie Colaneri on WHYY (Philadelphia Public Radio) about how BlocPower brings together investors and cutting edge technology to help low-to-moderate income building owners realize energy and cost savings for their buildings. Listen to the full story here.

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Honored to have Donnel Baird on Crain’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2017!

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At BlocPower we are laser focused on developing tangible and accessible solutions to some of the most pressing clean energy and air quality challenges. And for most of us, this work is very personal.  Our co-founder and CEO, Donnel Baird, is honored to have our work recognized through Crain’s 40 Under 40 Class of 2017. Read about how growing up in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood helped give Donnel the inspiration to start BlocPower. “I’ve been thinking about these ideas for 15 years,” he said. “Our goal is to be able to do this in every city in the country.” Check out the full article here.

BlocPower’s Chief Engineer talks Data Science on stage at IBM Interconnect 2017!

“The future for us is all about connecting the digital world to the physical world.”   -BlocPower Chief Engineer, Tooraj Arvajeh in his Keynote speech, March 21 on stage at the IBM Interconnect 2017 conference.  Watch the full video:

Continue reading BlocPower’s Chief Engineer talks Data Science on stage at IBM Interconnect 2017!

Data-Driven Solutions for Our Mission-Driven Organization

BlocPower’s engineers recently asked the question: What tools exist that enable us to quickly apply different machine learning techniques to the data we collected when conducting energy audits of 300 buildings?  And how can we use this tool to predict all of New York City’s energy consumption? Read on to learn how we partnered with IBM for the answer. Continue reading Data-Driven Solutions for Our Mission-Driven Organization

How is this New York in Winter?

It’s difficult to ignore the moderate days. The out of ordinary days. The days where you step outside and think, “How is this New York in the winter?” Although in the coming weeks it seems as if the weather will return to its normal, icy self, one cannot ignore the chilling “anomalies” of warm weather that are growing in relevancy and concern. The primary issue with brushing off the ubiquity of climate change is that more often than not, it leads to inaction.  

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Carbon Dioxide Levels BlocPower Recorded in a Bronx School Building in 2016

In November 2016, the Environmental Blog posted an article titled “How Our Environment Can Affect Our Health,” a piece that highlights how bettering the environment affects humans in a fundamental way, our health.

The author, John Tarantino, includes notes that frequently reminding people that soil quality and the well-being of animals are negatively impacted by pollution and climate change is not enough to drive change or cause citizens to speak up. Tarantino goes on to discuss the way human health is altered by environmental contamination, including air quality. This is a problem because the emissions of carbon and fossil fuels create prolonged air pollution that can turn short-term effects like asthma attacks into long-term issues like shortened human life spans and cancer. Only recently have agencies and organizations begun to look into this matter, which is encouraging because now a deeper, more profound conversation is happening about greenhouse gas emissions and air quality.

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Particulate Matter Levels BlocPower Recorded in a Bronx School Building in 2016

BlocPower actively works to combat climate change and improve human health. We are creating the Bronx Healthy Buildings Fund, a program that will enable building owners in the Bronx to install energy efficiency retrofit projects that also improve air quality. These retrofits will protect building occupants from health risks like the asthma attacks that currently plague the borough. BlocPower does this through our holistic evaluation of buildings. For example, rather than replacing an expensive boiler in a building, our engineers calculate how multiple building systems like heating and cooling interact with variables like light entering through windows of a building. Our models maximize energy savings while reducing the total cost of completing a building retrofit.

Working at BlocPower is fulfilling for this reason, I know departments from finance to business development are working tirelessly on models and techniques to fund energy retrofits and aid those living in overlooked social and environmental conditions. If you would like to read more about Tarantino’s article, here is a link from his environmental blog page, and once again here is my own blog which I mentioned in my recent post.

-Kayvon Gorji, Technology Intern, BlocPower

 

Behind the Scenes: My Technology Internship at BlocPower

I joined BlocPower because of a program my high school in Scottsdale, AZ offers called the Senior Research Project. The project allows all seniors to, instead of taking classes in their third trimester, research a central question and work for a company related to that topic. My question happened to be concerned with how retrofits like rooftop gardens being implemented in inner city schools affect STEM-based education. As chance would have it, the interplay of retrofits and inner cities is exactly what BlocPower does, so after looking into some sustainability companies, I found myself on BlocPower’s website and knew immediately “this is where I want to intern.” Continue reading Behind the Scenes: My Technology Internship at BlocPower

Free Community Retrofit NYC Program Helps Your Building Save on Energy Bills

BlocPower is proud to be the lead contractor on Community Retrofit NYC, a free city program that helps small co-ops, condos and other 5-50 unit multi-family dwellings in central Brooklyn and southern Queens save energy. To find out how Community Retrofit can help, fill out this form, or call (347) 762-4792. Continue reading Free Community Retrofit NYC Program Helps Your Building Save on Energy Bills