New York City Goes Green with an Eco-Friendly Billboard this Holiday Season

November 17, 2008

New York City goes green by launching a 100% wind and solar powered billboard this Holiday Season.

As alternative energy continues to be the hot topic in our flailing economy, New York City sets an environmental example by launching Times Square’s first 100 percent eco-powered billboard.

The billboard powered entirely by wind and sun, is the first such sign in New York City. It will be erected by Ricoh Company, Ltd., a Japanese company that strives to be outstanding in all areas of the environment, society, and the economy. Their first eco-signage project dates back to April 2003 in Osaka, Japan.

Powered By Wind Turbines and Solar Panels

The electricity for the billboard will be produced entirely by solar and wind power and stored in 16 batteries. No electricity will be purchased from local power companies.

Sixteen wind turbines and 65 solar panels will produce an average of 98 kwh of electricity per day (93 kwh from wind power and 5kwh from solar). To put the savings into perspective: the same amount of electricity required by an ordinary sign would result in as much as 18 tons of carbon dioxide per year. The batteries can hold four days worth of supply. However if there is insufficient wind or solar power, the sign may not light up, an eventuality that Ricoh readily accepts.

Construction on the 35,000-pound sign advertising Ricoh Americas Corp. is to begin this month across the avenue from the building where the ball drops on New Year’s Eve. A lighting ceremony for the 126-foot wide, 47-foot tall sign is scheduled for December 4th.