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Universities, research institutions invited to compete to create climate center on Governors Island

June 28, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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Mayor Bill de Blasio and The Trust for Governors Island on Monday launched a global competition to create a climate-focused research and educational hub on Governors Island. 

The competition invites universities and research institutions to establish an anchor institution for a Climate Solutions Center, dedicated to combating the climate crisis in the heart of New York City’s harbor. 

The Center, plans for which were announced in November 2020, will capitalize on New York City’s unique talent pool to prepare communities around the world for the impacts of climate change; create good-paying green jobs across the city; and foster public awareness, dialogue, and action to address the global climate crisis.

“As our city emerges from the COVID-19 crisis, we have a critical opportunity to address the global climate crisis in a way that centers equity, prepares our communities, and involves all New Yorkers in creating solutions,” said Clare Newman, president and CEO of the Trust for Governors Island.

U.S. Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-Brooklyn-Manhattan) said, “Establishing a world-class institution on Governors Island with the specific goal of finding ways to overcome the perils of climate change will bring green jobs to our city, provide meaningful opportunities for education and research, and ensure that any rising tide that lifts all New Yorkers is one we have firmly under our control.”

“Governors Island has a long and storied past, and I am pleased that the next chapter will include a center for innovative work on one of the great challenges of our time, climate change,” said State Sen. Brian Kavanagh (D-Downtown Brooklyn-Lower Manhattan). “As the RFEI process moves forward, it will be important to ensure that the applicant selected and the proposed development align with the values of the community and all New Yorkers who treasure Governors Island as a green, public open space.” 

“Governors Island is a crown jewel of this city — a place where families, workers and students have come to enjoy a beautiful landscape with spectacular views of the greatest city in the world. But we can get more out of this unique space. We can maintain the island’s identity while turning it into a world-class destination for fighting the climate crisis in New York City and across the world,” said Mayor de Blasio.

Responses to the request for proposals are due on Sept. 29, 2021. A center for climate solutions on Governors Island is projected to create over 7,000 direct new jobs and nearly $1 billion in economic impact for New York City, both on Governors Island alone, according to the city.

“The Urban Assembly New York Harbor School, that inhabits this awe-inspiring island, will be further supported by a Climate Solution Center by enhancing our abilities to provide exceptional, hands-on maritime education curriculum to our diverse student population. Our school’s unique career and technical education programming, which strives to break down barriers for young people entering into the Maritime Industry,” said Jeffrey Chetirko, principal of the Urban Assembly New York Harbor School on Governors Island.

The Trust for Governors Island is the non-profit corporation created by the City of New York that is responsible for the redevelopment and operation of 150 acres of Governors Island. The trust’s mission is to realize the full potential of Governors Island for the inspiration and enjoyment of all New Yorkers.

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