Urban Electric Power’s Executive Chairman Professor Sanjoy Banerjee was presented with the 2019 Green Chemistry Challenge Academic Award by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Dr. Banerjee was honored for creating large-scale zinc-manganese dioxide batteries that can be recharged thousands of times without the typical decrease in the length of the battery’s lifetime. Urban Electric Power holds exclusive license to commercialize the battery technology, and currently manufactures batteries at its plant in Pearl River, NY. The alkaline batteries do not have some of the limitations of incumbent battery technologies like, lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries, and they use materials that are abundant and common in existing supply chains. Other partners recognized include the City University of New York’s Energy Institute, Sandia National Laboratories, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and the Energy Storage Research Program in the Department of Energy’s Office of Electricity all of whom work closely with Urban Electric Power in bringing this technology to market. 

“We congratulate the award winners and creators of these remarkable technologies that will help American businesses by reducing costs and opening up new markets for cleaner and safer products and services,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “These technologies support economic growth and protect public health by reducing hazardous chemicals and conserving energy and water.”

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has supported several early research and development projects for Urban Electric Power which helped pave the way for the company to refine its technology that was the basis for this award.

CUNY and Urban Electric Power team at award ceremony.

CUNY and Urban Electric Power team at award ceremony.

Alicia Barton, President and CEO, NYSERDA, said, “Today’s entrepreneurs are paving the way for New York to achieve its clean energy future and I commend Urban Electric Power on this recognition.  Governor Cuomo’s commitment to advancing economy-wide innovation is bringing new and innovative clean-energy technologies to the forefront of our fight against the impacts of climate change.” 

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is recognizing landmark green chemistry technologies developed by industrial pioneers and leading scientists that turn potential environmental challenges into business opportunities, spurring innovation and economic development. The Green Chemistry Challenge Award winners were honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

During the 23 years of the program, EPA has received more than 1,600 nominations and presented awards to 118 technologies that decrease hazardous chemicals and resources, reduce costs, protect public health and spur economic growth. Winning technologies are responsible for annually reducing the use or generation of hundreds of millions of pounds of hazardous chemicals and saving billions of gallons of water and trillions of BTUs in energy.