2006_08_mayorhotday.jpgWith the mercury rising to high for the city's liking, Mayor Bloomberg held a press conference at the Office of Emergency Operations in Brooklyn to emphasize what the city is doing during the heat wave. We suspect he's trying to be extra visible and genially authoritative (check out the plaid shirt!) in order to salvage public opinion after the Queens blackout, but his words are important:

“The heat wave affects New Yorkers in all five boroughs, and that’s why the City is aggressively moving to protect New Yorkers from Tottenville to Co-Op City from this week’s oppressive heat and promote energy conservation. Hundreds of people have already tragically passed away due to the heat wave in other parts of the country, and I urge New Yorkers – especially seniors – to take the danger of high temperatures and humidity seriously. You can beat the heat by drinking plenty of water, staying out of the sun, avoiding strenuous activity, and taking advantage of City cooling centers and public pools. The City is also actively taking large energy users such as wastewater treatment plants off the grid and conserving energy at City buildings across the five boroughs to help cope with the increased demands on the electrical grid.”

Of course, he reiterated all the things you should do to stay healthy during the heat. When asked about Con Ed handling public information better during the next (let's hope not) blackout, NY Times reports that the Mayor says he's "confident we will ask a lot more questions.” Yes - joined by all the Queens politiicans and residents who have experience asking basic questions like "what the hell is going on.

Other interesting ways the organizations are conserving energy:

The Parks Department today will turn off the decorative lights at the Coney Island Parachute Jump, Keyspan Stadium, and Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn. In the Bronx, 75 percent of all lights and air conditioning has been turned off at Yankee Stadium, and lighting at Henry Hudson Monument and the Victory Monument has also extinguished. In Manhattan, all decorative lighting at Washington Square Arch, Columbus Circle Monument & Fountain, and Randall’s Island Icahn Stadium has been turned off. In Staten Island, the stadium lights at McArthur Park have been extinguished. In Queens, all decorative and stadium lights have been turned off at Shea Stadium, as have the lights at the Unisphere.

...The Rockrose Development Corporation and Pepsi have turned the Long Island City “Pepsi-Cola” sign off. The Empire State and Chrysler Buildings will extinguish their iconic spire lights tonight and tomorrow.

Which brings up a good point from reader Annalisa: What about all the advertising in Times Square? She tried calling 311 and the Times Square Alliance to see who to contact to get Times Square to shut off the lights. If you want ask the Times Square dim its lights (the outdoor companies will probably have to call all the advertisers), the numbers will appear fter the jump.

Gotham Gazette has a fantastic look at how old the city's energy infrastructure is. Well, fantastic in that it's informative - it's actually quite depressing. And more good reading: Last Sunday, the NY Times had some op-eds about Con Ed and how to fix the issues in Queens.

To see if advertisements and marquees and go dim in Times Square, contact:

- Community Board 5 (Times Square): 212-465-0907
- Times Square Alliance: 212-768-1560 (x. 5200 gets the head of the Alliance)
- Con Ed: 1-800-75-CON-ED
- 311 for NYC info