Shining a light on sustainability and innovation

Pittsburgh bridge gets an energy-efficient makeover this holiday season with help from Covestro

Energy Flow bridge lighting installation
Sustainability and innovation are highlighted in Pittsburgh this holiday season as one of the city’s famed bridges is awash in light and colors thanks to the Energy Flow bridge lighting installation, powered in part by wind energy. (Photo credit: Roy Engelbrecht)

Pittsburgh, November 17, 2016 — Tonight, Pittsburgh unveiled Covestro’s latest project demonstrating its commitment to sustainability and innovation. The global materials technology company is a proud supporter of the Energy Flow art installation, which uses wind power and LED lights to illuminate one of Pittsburgh’s most prominent bridges for the holiday season.

The Energy Flow bridge lighting display is the brainchild of environmental artist Andrea Polli. Polli provided the design, and Ron Gdovic, CEO WindStax Wind Power Systems, developed the nanogrids and wind turbines that are the main source of power for the lighting installation. The 16 specially designed wind turbines are mounted on steel platforms and secured to the bridge. They generate power for the 27,000 multi-colored LED lights that illuminate the Rachel Carson Bridge (also known as the 9th Street Bridge). The bridge itself represents a sustainable ideology, as it is named for the environmental activist and Pittsburgh-area native Rachel Carson.

Covestro’s support of Energy Flow is reminiscent of its recent involvement with Solar Impulse, a solar-powered airplane that flew around the world without a single drop of fossil fuel. Covestro continues its relationship with Solar Impulse today through the World Alliance for Clean Technologies. These commitments reflect the company’s strong focus on sustainability, a core component of its vision to make the world a brighter place.

“We champion projects like Solar Impulse and Energy Flow because they push the boundaries of what was thought to be possible, using technology in new and innovative ways to drive greater awareness around the topic of sustainability,” said Jerry MacCleary, president of Covestro LLC in North America. “That’s exactly what we we’re trying to achieve at Covestro by embedding sustainability into our innovation strategy.”

The Energy Flow installation not only underscores Covestro’s commitment to the environment but also to the Pittsburgh region that the company has called its North American home for nearly 60 years.

Covestro’s connection to the area’s bridges stretches beyond the temporary lighting installation to the coatings that protect the bridge itself. Polyurethane raw materials from Covestro are used to formulate the coatings on the Rachel Carson Bridge and many others throughout the region. The corrosion protection enabled by Covestro’s raw materials helps to beautify and extend the service life of the steel bridge structures. Pittsburgh is known as “the city of bridges,” boasting 446 bridges – even more than Venice.

The Pittsburgh media and downtown commuters were given a sneak preview of the lighting installation tonight. The bridge will officially be illuminated on Friday, Nov. 18, as part of the city’s Comcast Light Up Night® festivities. The project was realized through the efforts of Pittsburgh Mayor William Peduto, Covestro LLC, the Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership, Riverlife, the City of Pittsburgh, Duquesne Light Company and DQE Communications.

About Covestro LLC:

Covestro LLC is one of the leading producers of high-performance polymers in North America and is part of the global Covestro business with 2015 sales of EUR 12.1 billion. Covestro manufactures high-tech polymer materials and develops innovative solutions for products used in many areas of daily life. The main segments served are the automotive, electrical and electronics, construction, medical and sports and leisure industries. The Covestro group has 30 production sites around the globe and employed approximately 15,800 people at the end of 2015.

Find more information at

Covestro Contact:

Alice Sox, Phone: +1 412-413-5430

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This press release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Covestro AG. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Covestro’s public reports which are available on the Covestro website at Covestro assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

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