The state of clean energy in New York

I don’t think anyone would argue that it’s been an eventful few months for the Empire State — and the renewable energy and environmental justice space has been no exception. I know climate news can feel overwhelming, but New York has seen some major wins and exciting developments that I wanted to highlight for you!  

First, the Hochul administration signaled a strong commitment to decarbonization by announcing a bold new distributed solar target of at least 10 gigawatts by 2030! While this is an enormous step forward for our clean energy future, there’s more work to be done. Our fresh-off-the-press report with Local Solar for All outlines how accelerating the growth of local solar can help us meet our climate and equity commitments, create tens of thousands of jobs, and save New Yorkers $28 billion by 2050. With a climate champion in Albany, there’s a huge opportunity to go even bigger and push for solutions that will put us on the path to a clean energy economy that brings everyone along. 

In other good news, the state’s Department of Energy Conservation denied permits for harmful gas plant expansions, stating that the projects were noncompliant with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA), New York’s landmark climate law. Thousands of New Yorkers — including more than 100 Vote Solar members — spoke out in opposition of the expansions, and there’s no doubt that your activism played a major role in the decision. Thank you! 

As we build on this momentum and look ahead to what’s next, our attention turns to passing the Climate and Community Investment Act (CCIA). By charging polluters for their toxic emissions, the CCIA will generate $15 billion per year to invest in frontline communities, create good jobs, and advance our renewable economy. Passage of the CCIA will be transformative for New York’s overburdened communities. While it wasn’t brought forward for a vote during this year’s legislative session, we’re not giving up — and we can start putting the pressure on now. You can take action now by emailing your state lawmakers and urging them to pass the CCIA when the legislature reconvenes in the new year. 

Thank you for your critical support as we continue pushing for comprehensive, equitable climate legislation and a clean energy economy for New York. I can’t wait to see what we accomplish next!

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