By Audrey Kemp, LA Reporter

March 1, 2024 | 6 min read

The initiative aims to inspire New Yorkers to join the collective mission to help transition the city to 100% clean energy by 2040.

Consolidated Edison (ConEd), the energy powerhouse serving the New York metropolitan area, is on a resolute mission to transform the Big Apple to 100% green energy by 2040. The company’s ambitious plan could facilitate life in the city for the next 200 years.

To help New Yorkers visualize this transformation, ConEd tapped Code and Theory, a digital creative agency and ConEd partner since 2021, to ideate and develop an awareness campaign, dubbed ‘Where Clean Energy Lives,’ in order to reshape New Yorkers’ perception of their city and encourage active participation in building this cleaner future together. The creative portrays NYC not only as a bustling metropolis, but as a collective home deserving of preservation.

In an interview with The Drum, Amy Carvajal, Code and Theory’s chief creative officer, expressed her passion for the project and emphasized the rare opportunity to work on a mission-based initiative that positively impacts her own home.

“ConEd is also a born-and-bred brand that is powering the hub of the world, so they have a personal investment as well,” she added.

The multi-channel campaign spans video, broadcast, TV commercials, print, digital out-of-home and transit messaging, all to make the invisible visible. ConEd’s investments comprise engineering a modernized, reliable power grid with reduced reliance on fossil fuels by bringing wind and solar energy from offshore and retiring fossil fuel plants.

Utilizing aerial and cinematic photography, video spots show denizens in a post-transition, a fully green city, zeroing in the city’s green spaces, from its brightly lit botanical gardens to one of the over 1m EV charging stations to be installed by 2040.

On Earth Day, ConEd and Code and Theory also immersed New Yorkers in an interactive exhibit at Union Square, which showcased videos of solar farms upstate, audio stories about newly built electric vehicle charging stations and interactive digital boards displaying the construction of offshore wind turbines.

ConEd reports the project has garnered awareness and support for several clean energy projects and initiatives, like the installation of over 60,000 solar systems in various neighborhoods, from the Rainey to Corona transmission line in Queens to the innovative Brooklyn Clean Energy Hub in Vinegar Hill.

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The campaign has also improved ConEd’s image in the public eye. Recent results indicate a significant shift in public perception, with a 20% increase in the view that “ConEd is leading New York’s clean energy transition” and an 18% increase in the perception that ConEd is a “forward-thinking company” committed to making renewable energy available to its customers.

“Code and Theory has been a great partner for Con Edison as we continue to inform and educate our customers on critical clean energy projects, energy efficiency and customer assistance programs in New York City and our service area,” added John Fredette, head of marketing at Con Edison. “Code and Theory has excellent strategic, creative and digital expertise, all of which has helped us drive engagement with customers across different platforms and media.”

‘Where Clean Energy Lives’ arrives in tandem with some of the nation’s most aggressive climate and clean energy initiatives, which put the state of New York on a path to achieving a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040. This includes a target of 70% renewable energy generation by 2030 and economy-wide carbon neutrality by mid-century, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Last March, New York received a $3m Climate Pollution Reduction Grant (CPRG) from the EPA. This grant, part of President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, aims to cut climate pollution and implement clean energy economies across the state.

As the campaign gains momentum, ConEd and Code and Theory are not only transforming the energy landscape of New York but inspiring a sense of collective responsibility and participation in creating a cleaner, greener future for the city and its residents.

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