June 26th, 2012
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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May 30th, 2012
New York stands at an energy crossroads: the state can continue its business as usual approach to energy or build a safer, healthier local economy by passing the NY Solar Jobs Act. And there’s no question that New Yorkers support the latter . . .
Today we released results of a bi-partisan poll showing that an overwhelming majority of New York voters – of all political parties, from all regions of the state, and across all kinds of different demographics – support proposals to increase the use of local solar power. In fact, fully 81% of New York voters support the New York Solar Jobs Act. It’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s a SUPER majority! » Read the rest of this entry «
May 7th, 2012
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.
March 5th, 2012
There is some serious solar momentum in New York State. More than 100 state legislators have signed on to co-sponsor strong new solar policy. Governor Cuomo called for more solar in his ‘State of the State’ address. And thousands of New Yorkers have already spoken up in support of the New York Solar Jobs Act. But naysayers are doing all they can to derail that progress. We need your help keeping it on track!
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January 5th, 2012
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.
December 9th, 2011
Both are ready to see more solar in the Empire State.
When Bill O’Reilly recently declared that he’d go solar except that “there’s nowhere, no one” to install solar on his Long Island residence, we called upon our friends in the solar industry to let him know they were there to help.
With hundreds of solar companies operating in New York, we easily garnered the support of 16 companies and 2 trade associations representing dozens more to let Mr. O’Reilly know they are ready for his solar business. Lo and behold, with a little help from the New York solar industry, Mr. O’Reilly found a “legitimate guy” who’s ready and able to get to work installing that new solar energy system. We know a few more . . .
Just this week, our New York Solar Jobs Act (“like” it) coalition welcomed the support of labor and trade organizations representing tens of thousands of workers eager to build New York’s solar infrastructure.
Along with the hundreds of solar companies in New York, skilled labor and trades will be a vital component of a vibrant and long-term solar market. With unemployment numbers remaining high, the Solar Jobs Act would create and sustain thousands of well paying jobs in these hard-hit sectors.
Creating more jobs per dollar of investment than conventional energy industries, investing in solar power is an investment in both New York’s future and New York’s historic workforce. In fact, 14 new jobs would be created for every million dollars invested in clean, renewable solar energy (see here, page 29), three times more created than the oil and natural gas industries for the same level of investment.
And while we’re eager to hear back from Mr. O’Reilly about his decision to go solar, we are even more enthusiastic about the entire state of New York embracing the promise of reliable solar energy for years to come. This is what the New York Solar Jobs Act means.
November 21st, 2011
11/25 – Update!!!! The NY solar industry’s open letter got through to Mr. O’Reilly – he’s now working with a “legitimate guy” to go solar on his Long Island home. How’s that for proof that Americans, regardless of political orientation, love them some local solar power?
No surprise that Fox News isn’t exactly presenting spin-free rhetoric when it comes to talking about our nation’s growing solar industry. Take the case of just last week when Bill O’Reilly of the eponymous Fox Business show made a claim that he’d go solar if only he could find somewhere it was available . . . » Read the rest of this entry «
June 29th, 2011
Late last week New York lawmakers went home for the summer without passing the NY Solar Jobs Act that we all worked so hard to advance. Friends, we are disappointed that we don’t have a brand new big solar program to celebrate, but there are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about a bright future for solar in the Empire State . . .
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June 21st, 2011
We are currently in the final stretches of a campaign to bring a good chunk of solar to the empire state (feel free to read up on that campaign here). It is a campaign that has everything. We have celebrities and sports stars providing testimonials, letters of support from tens of thousands of New York voters. We have great materials educating folks on how solar works, and there are a number of great piece in the press.
We even to a sign out in the biggest place you can take a sign out — Times Square — showing Albany that New York is ready for solar. » Read the rest of this entry «
June 16th, 2011
Times Square is about to get a little bit sunnier: starting today, our digital billboard features photographs of real New Yorkers calling for state lawmakers to make the Empire State a solar energy powerhouse by passing the New York Solar Jobs Act of 2011 (S.4178/A.5713) before the end of session on Monday. The featured New Yorkers are winners and finalists in our Empire State Solar Generation Photo Contest – see the full ad below! » Read the rest of this entry «