UPDATE: Governor Cuomo signed this bill on July 18.
The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act passed the Assembly early this morning and will now await the Governor’s signature. Solar advocates praised the State Legislature’s adoption of long anticipated legislation that will help New York’s efforts to fight climate change by boosting solar energy, requiring at least 70% of electric generation come from renewable sources by 2030, and providing needed funding to low-income and environmental justice communities.
The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act agreed to earlier this week by Gov. Cuomo and the state Senate and Assembly includes a requirement for 6 gigawatts of local, distributed solar energy by 2025, which the Million Solar Strong Coalition has sought for the past two years, enough to power one million homes throughout New York. A report released earlier this year by Vote Solar estimates that achieving this solar goal will sustain more than 11,000 jobs between now and 2025.
“We thank the Legislature and Governor Cuomo for recognizing that the climate crisis demands both ambitious long-term goals to decarbonize our electricity system and the near-term renewable energy milestones needed to drive immediate progress, create local jobs and provide healthier air for New York’s families,” said Sean Garren, Vote Solar northeast senior director. “We are thrilled that the new Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act passed today heeds our call to take Gov. Cuomo’s stated goal of 6 gigawatts of local, distributed solar energy by 2025, enough to power a million New York households, and put the force of law behind it. It also includes a strong commitment to serving low-income and environmental justice communities, which will help ensure New York is building a new energy economy that is both clean and just. At a time when President Trump and the federal government have ignored the very real threats posed by climate change, we hope other states will follow New York’s lead. Our lives and world that we’re leaving to our children depend on it.”
“We applaud the legislature and Governor Cuomo for leading the nation with this historic legislation to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and scale up renewable energy,” said Betta Broad, New Yorkers for Clean Power director. “We’re especially excited about the inclusion of the 6 gigawatts of distributed solar by 2025 that will enable communities to install more local clean power and more equitably share the benefits of renewable energy.”
“On behalf of New York’s solar energy industry, we applaud Governor Andrew Cuomo and state lawmakers — especially Assemblymember Steve Englebright and Senator Todd Kaminsky — for advancing this historic legislation,” said Shyam Mehta, New York Solar Energy Industries Association executive director. “We are also profoundly grateful to our partner organizations, policy makers and advocates for their tireless work that brought us to this moment. Guided by this bold vision, NYSEIA’s member companies stand ready to continue investing in New York State’s electricity infrastructure and our workforce to help reach this legislation’s full potential. New York now has a bold mandate to clean up the electric grid and improve air quality and public health for millions of New Yorkers that also rises to the challenge of the climate crisis with urgency and innovation.”
“With passage of this bill, the Empire State is on the right path to growing its economy and tackling the greatest environmental challenge of our time,” said Sean Gallagher, Solar Energy Industries Association VP of state affairs. “Codifying a 70%renewable energy requirement by 2030 and mandating 6 gigawatts of solar by 2025 will solidify the state’s energy policy for years to come and bring solar to millions of New Yorkers.”
News item from Vote Solar