Matt Richmond, WSKG


WSKG/Southern Tier reporter for the Innovation Trail.

Matt Richmond comes to Binghamton from South Sudan, where he worked as a stringer for Bloomberg, and freelanced for Radio France International, Voice of America, and German Press Agency dpa.

He has worked with KQED in Los Angeles, Cape Times in Cape Town, South Africa, and served in the Peace Corps in Cameroon. Matt's masters in journalism is from the Annenberg School for Communication at USC.



Mon October 8, 2012

USGS releases Utica Shale reserves estimate

A USGS map of the Utica Shale, the red shows areas with natural gas reserves, the green shows oil reserves.

The U.S. Geological Survey released its first reserves estimate for the Utica Shale last week.

The federal agency estimates that the Utica holds about 38 trillion cubic feet of recoverable gas and 940 million barrels of oil.

According to the USGS press release:

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Mon October 8, 2012

Southern Tier planners aim for dramatic emissions cuts

Regional planning agencies in the Southern Tier are working toward a goal of cutting 80% of their greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2050.

The plan is called Cleaner Greener Southern Tier and is due by the end of the year. In addition to seeking major cuts from 1990 emissions levels by the middle of this century, it will be used to pursue funding from the New York State Energy Research and Development (NYSERDA).

The projects that would help the region reach 80% cuts are ambitious: an inventory of greenhouse gas emissions in the eight participating counties, more energy efficient power generation through wind farms and solar power, the expansion of inter-city mass transit and a region-wide electric vehicle infrastructure, among many others.

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Fri October 5, 2012

Binghamton mayor considering options on fracking

In a decision released Tuesday, supreme court judge Ferris Lebous concluded that the City of Binghamton's prohibition on natural gas development and storage in the city is invalid.

In an interview Friday, Binghamton Mayor Matt Ryan said the city will probably appeal.

"We thought, and we still think, it was done legally," says Ryan. "Actually, from how I read the decision, if it had been an outright ban, it would have been ok."

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Fri September 28, 2012

Green Jobs Green New York off to a slow start

Pat Dundon in the office, surrounded by workarounds for the energy efficiency modeling software TREAT.
Matt Richmond WSKG

The walls around Pat Dundon's desk are slowly filling up with white printouts. Some have the letterhead of the state's energy research organization NYSERDA, and others are lists he's created.

His involvement in a program called Green Jobs Green New York has produced all this paperwork. Through the program, NYSERDA offers low-interest loans for energy efficiency upgrades.

In January 2012*, an on-bill financing option was added for homeowners making energy improvements. At the end of July, a total of $16.7 million had been approved in loans; $1.3 million of that total was for on-bill financing loans.

That's when Dundon, a Binghamton-area contractor, began filling his wall with cheat sheets.

Contractors have to show that a proposed job will pay itself off in future energy savings before NYSERDA will approve the loan.

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Tue September 25, 2012

Sikorsky Aircraft to close Big Flats plant

The Sikorsky plant was fitting special mission equipment to Black Hawk and Sea Hawk helicopters
License Some rights reserved by The U.S. Army Creative Commons License

The Connecticut-based helicopter maker Sikorsky announced on Monday that it will close its Southern Tier plant at the end of the year.

In a statement, company spokesman Paul Jackson says planned cutbacks at the Pentagon were the reason for the closure:

Due to declining defense budgets and the continuing economic weakness in many markets, Sikorsky yesterday informed employees of its intent to close the Sikorsky Military Completions Center (SMCC) in Horseheads as of December 31, 2012, and transition the work to our West Palm Beach, Fla., facility. 

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