ALBANY – After last month’s Supreme Court ruling to limit the authority of the Environmental Protection Agency, New York State is taking climate matters into its own hands.
Tuesday, Governor Kathy Hochul signed three bills to enhance clean energy development and energy efficiency, while reducing greenhouse gas emission.
“We’re going to be updating our building codes. What does that mean? It’s going to help reduce greenhouse emissions from buildings all across the state because the biggest contributor of emissions is buildings,” explains Hochul. “We’ve known that, we’ve recognized that and now we’re doing something about that. That’s one-third of the state’s total greenhouse emissions. Also, this will help our New Yorkers save on energy costs. Boy, does that sound good at a time when our citizens are getting slammed with inflation, high cost of living. And any way we can reduce their cost is so important to them.”
This bill aims to save low and moderate-income households $6 billion and inch the state closer to the goal of an 85 percent emission reduction by 2050.
Hochul also signed the Utility Thermal Energy Network and Jobs Act, which will reduce harmful emissions from buildings and replaces fossil fuel underground pipe systems with new clean energy systems.
“Unlocking the possibilities, harnessing that power source and working really in a smart way. $15 million has been committed for future studies, detailed designs and construction projects as well. I know that’s going to help protect our environment with lots of good jobs and we like the sound of that,” says Hochul.
With these bills, Hochul claims there will be over 286,000 clean energy jobs by the year 2050.
“Bringing together the environmental community, the climate action community, and labor together. That’s when we hit the sweet spot. That’s when we say we can get to a better future, but also lifting people up with good paying jobs so their families can live the American dream,” says Hochul.
The last bill signed into law will extend prevailing wage requirements for renewable energy projects, specifically solar panel jobs that will be filled with union workers.
The state also has a $500 million commitment for offshore wind to create the supply chain so the state can become energy independent.