Following on yesterday’s announcement from Governor Cuomo for a 10-year, $1.5 billion expansion of the NY-Sun program, we wanted to offer some additional color on what exactly this means for NY’s rapidly growing solar market.
As we reported on Wednesday, we’ve spent the past several years calling upon the Governor and New York’s policy makers to establish a long-term solar program supported by prudent incentives and solar friendly regulations. The conception and rollout of the NY-Sun program in 2012 was without question a tremendous step in the right direction and responsible for deploying solar throughout NY today. We are therefore extremely pleased that the Governor is stepping forward with leadership and embracing the vision for a world-class solar market and success in the clean-tech race.
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Some BIG solar news from New York! Today, in his 2013 State of the State, Governor Andrew Cuomo made some significant solar proposals. Proposals that will work to fundamentally transform the state’s solar market while broadening access to solar, enabling the industry to scale and reducing the cost.
The Governor called for a major expansion of his NY-Sun Initiative. The original NY-Sun, announced by the Governor at last year’s State of the State, called for doubling solar installations in 2012 and quadrupling in 2013. However, that program was too small and too intermittent–while helpful, it fell short of accomplishing the job of market transformation.
This year, the Governor announced a long-term commitment to NY-Sun, expanding the program into a 10 year, $150 million/year program. If we’re doing our math right…that’s a billion and a half dollars to develop a world-class solar industry and unleash the many benefits that solar energy delivers.
Here’s the money quote from the Governor’s speech (full text found here).
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Yesterday New York Governor Cuomo outlined his priorities for the year ahead in his State of the State address. Among his top initiatives for a building a better New York? More solar!
Touting the state’s successful development of other renewable resources, Cuomo remarked that,
“Now it is time to focus more attention on exploiting our solar potential.”
With rising electricity needs, plenty of sunshine, and a local workforce primed for solar jobs, that potential is tremendous indeed. To harness it, the Governor suggests increasing large, commercial solar projects while also supporting small and medium residential and commercial systems. With an emphasis on much needed job growth, Cuomo has set his sights on quadrupling NY solar capacity by 2013 and beyond. And along with those leaders from the business community, environmental advocates and organized labor, Vote Solar stood up and applauded the Governor’s solar vision.
The Governor’s proposal directly in line with the early years of the solar growth path included as part of last year’s New York Power Act. Passed by the legislature and signed by Cuomo himself, that legislation included a cost-benefit study for a more aggressive 5,000 megawatts of solar. (The results of that study are due out later this month, so stay tuned).
The New York Solar Jobs Act would make good on that promise, providing the necessary blueprint for 5,000 MW of solar development of all sized by 2026. In doing so it would stimulate immediate investment in solar jobs and infrastructure and lay the foundation for long-term solar leadership. Building a solar market that is comprehensive, robust and stable will mean quality jobs, clean air, reliable electricity and a bright economic future for generations of New Yorkers.
First the 5,000 MW study. Now the State of the State. It’s clear that New York plans to make a solar move in 2012. Let’s make that move worthy of the Empire State.