The New York legislature shut its doors for 2012 without passing the Solar Jobs Act or any long-term solar program. Although the Empire State missed a tremendous opportunity for solar power, we gained a tremendous amount of people power.
We diversified and strengthened our solar coalition, highlighted real solar jobs in communities up and down the state, showed a supermajority of voter support, and partnered with actor Mark Ruffalo to add his star power to the cause. Altogether, tens of thousands of New Yorkers spoke up for solar. The Hulk aside, that’s a lot of muscle.
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Summer is nearly here, and we’re urging Albany to put more of that New York sunshine to work already! It’s time to show lawmakers that solar power is a priority for New Yorkers.
We’re teaming up with an incredible group of organizations to do just that at free community events up and down the state. These New York Solar Jobs Days will feature fun solar demos, training from solar job experts, opportunities to talk with local solar companies, and plenty of ways to show your elected official that you care.
Get some sun at the New York Solar Jobs Day nearest you:
New York Solar Jobs Days are a joint project of Vote Solar, Natural Resource Defense Council, Pace Energy & Climate Center, Alliance for Clean Energy New York, Solar Energy Industries Association, New York Solar Energy Industries Association, Citizen’s Campaign for the Environment, Workforce Development Institute, Apollo Alliance, New York League of Conservation Voters, Renewable Energy Long Island, Vision Long Island, The Alliance for a Greater New York, People United for Sustainable Housing, Center for Working Families, Sierra Club, Environment New York and Environmental Advocates of New York.
Without strong state policy providing a clear roadmap for growth, solar currently accounts for far less than 1% of New York’s electricity. Even so, it’s provided many New Yorkers with clean energy, bill savings, and a rare bright spot of economic opportunity through the recession economy.
Just imagine what could be accomplished with real leadership from Albany. The New York Solar Jobs Act proposal, for instance, would make the Empire State a clear solar leader with a goal of deploying 3,000 MW by 2021.
Join us in calling on our lawmakers for solar action. In this fight, there’s nothing as powerful as the voices of real New Yorkers.
P.S. – Can’t make it to a New York Solar Jobs Day in person? Send a little virtual sunshine to lawmakers with an email of solar support here.
Really big and important new municipal solar programs:
Vote Solar was founded out of a successful effort to put solar on public buildings in San Francisco, and now the city continues its pioneering ways. After a grueling series of hearings, on June 10th the Board of Supes approved a 10 yr, $3 mil incentive program that will help put upwards of 55 MW on 10,000 roofs. More info here. It’s a big deal, and will help put SF on a path to greater energy independence and fewer carbon emissions. Many thanks to City Assessor Phil Ting, whose solar task force suggested the idea, and Supervisors Dufty, Alioto-Pier, Ammiano, Chu, Elsbernd, Maxwell, Sandoval and Mirkarimi who vetted it and voted it through. Next step: a solar loan program, ala the Berkeley model. Many thanks to Claudia Eyzaguirre for her tireless organizing and helping to rally grassroots on this!
Well…San Francisco held unchallenged title to Nation’s Largest Municipal Solar Program for, well, all of a week. On June 17th, the NY State Legislature passed a bill to provide a 35% property tax abatement for solar installed in New York City, a plan born of Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC. That’s also really big deal-there are a lot of rooftops in Queens and environs.
Which city will be #1? We propose a friendly wager on solar development. What say you, Mayors Newsom and Bloomberg? Care to put up some money and bragging rights on, say, greatest per capita amount of solar installed in your fair cities by 2015?