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NYC Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting

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Keywords

  • new york city film industry
  • biodiesel generator
  • film production emissions
  • film production generators
  • film location air quality
  • biodiesel for film generators

Company Description

Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
As the first film commission in the country, the Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting is the one-stop shop for all production needs in New York City, The agency markets NYC as a prime location, provides premiere customer service to production companies and facilitates production throughout the five boroughs.

The Mayor’s Office of Film, Theatre & Broadcasting encourages productions to support a sustainable production industry by having a gentle and mindful impact on New York City locations.

NYC Green Screen offers resources and tips for productions in NYC to use Before the Shoot, During the Shoot and After the Shoot and celebrates industry efforts to be environmentally conscious.

Biodiesel Generator Emissions Study

For a 2009 study on the effectiveness of biodiesel on the film set, the MOFTB organized an alliance between Cornell researchers, CCNY grad students and Sony Pictures Entertainment to help compare emission output between diesel and biodiesel, a plant-based alternative fuel. The study took place on the set of Columbia Pictures’ The Taking of Pelham 123 while it shot on location in Brooklyn in June 2008.

On March 18, Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg signed legislation that required the use of ultra-low sulfur diesel (ULSD) fuel in diesel-powered generators for film, television, and commercial productions and at street fairs in New York City.

ULSD fuel is diesel fuel that has a sulfur content of no more than fifteen parts per million and differs from the fuel tested in Cornell’s study, which was biodiesel fuel, a combination of ULSD and processed waste vegetable oil. Beginning on June 18, any diesel-powered generator that is used to provide electrical power for equipment used in productions that require a permit from a city agency must be powered by ULSD fuel. Any person who violates this provision will be liable for a civil penalty in the amount of $500 for each day in which they are in violation of the provision.

“Wider industry adoption and use of biodiesel for film generators, backup equipment and construction can greatly improve air quality and reduce pollutants that contribute to asthma and respiratory problems critically important in many New York City neighborhoods,” said John Nettleton, Senior Lecturer in City and Regional Planning at Cornell.

Diesel vs. Biodiesel

According to the researchers, use of biodiesel significantly reduces the impact on those working in the area, passing by and breathing the air. Emission levels of nitrogen oxides also decreased by 5.5%. This gas contributes to smog and directly affects those with respiratory problems.

Continuing Efforts

The MOFTB is committed to supporting green practices in the film industry by encouraging productions to be mindful of their impact on city locations and celebrating industry efforts to be more environmentally conscious. The MOFTB also serves as a resource for productions looking to ‘go green’ while shooting in the five boroughs.

Launched in 2007, NYC Green Screen is an online guide that provides tips, resources and other environmentally friendly information to help productions reduce energy use while filming. Visit www.nyc.gov/film/nycgreenscreen to learn more.

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