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Two Western New York Manufacturers To Receive Low-Cost Niagara Hydropower for 33 New Jobs

Paul Demichele

April 24, 2007

For Immediate Release

WHITE PLAINS—The New York Power Authority (NYPA) Board of Trustees Tuesday approved allocations of low-cost power from NYPA’s Niagara Power Project to two Western New York manufacturers for 33 new jobs and capital investments of more than $6 million. 

The allocations, from a block of hydropower known as Expansion Power, will support new equipment purchases and other expansion plans by MoldTech, in Lancaster, and ISOCHEM, in Lockport. Moldtech manufactures injection-molded rubber products, while ISOCHEM produces industrial chemicals.  

The NYPA board approved a 250-kilowatt (kw) allocation in support of plans by MoldTech to add 30 jobs to its current workforce of 45. The company is going to double its capacity of injection molding machines at the Lancaster facility, where it has operated since 1994. The $4.3 million expansion also includes building improvements, for additional manufacturing space.  

In February, the trustees approved an allocation of 400 kw to Moldtech for a new facility it had been planning for Amherst. But since then, the company has decided to undertake the expansion in Lancaster, instead of relocating. This led the NYPA board to modify the allocation because the additional electric load will be less than what would have resulted from a new facility.  

Moldtech has grown significantly over the last two years and expects to experience growth of up to 50 percent this year. The company began with small, local industrial customers. It has since expanded to industries such as automotive, medical, electrical, agriculture and defense, for products that include gaskets, electronic seals and medical masks.  

ISOCHEM is installing new processing equipment to produce new products, lower production costs, and recycle organic solvents. The 300-kw allocation for the company will support three new jobs and capital investment of nearly $2 million. The low-cost power is also expected to help the Lockport operation, now employing 93 people, win projects from a sister facility in Hungary, where fixed costs remain substantially lower.  

The Western New York Advisory Group (WNAG), consisting of NYPA, National Grid, Empire State Development Corp., the Buffalo Niagara Enterprise, and the Niagara County Department of Economic Development, recommended Tuesday’s allocations. The WNAG was established in 2003 to help identify qualified companies for the project’s available low-cost power, sold at a fraction of market electricity prices, to spur the creation of jobs in the region.  

More than 43,000 jobs in Western New York are linked to Expansion Power and another block of Niagara industrial power known as Replacement Power. The two programs, provided for under state law, account for about a third of the project’s output.

  About NYPA:

 ■    NYPA uses no tax money or state credit.  It finances its operations through the sale of bonds and revenues earned in large part through sales of electricity.  ■    NYPA is a leader in promoting energy-efficiency, new energy technologies and electric transportation initiatives.  ■    It is the nation’s largest state-owned electric utility, with 18 generating facilities in various parts of the state and more than 1,400 circuit-miles of transmission lines.

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