New York To Mandate 50 Percent Renewable Energy by 2030

New York Governor Cuomo plans to issue a mandate, called the Clean Energy Standard, to require that New York State achieve 50 percent of its power from renewable sources by 2030 according to a press release issued on November 23 by Richard Kauffman, Chairman of Energy and Finance for New York within the Governor’s office.

The Clean Energy Standard will provide support for upstate nuclear power plants whose operations are under threat because of low natural gas prices. To be clear, said Kauffman, nuclear sources will not count toward the 50 percent renewable mandate.

The American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE) applauded Governor Cuomo and the State of New York on the plan to generate 50 percent of the state’s power from solar, wind, hydroelectric, biomass or other renewable sources in 15 years.

“The Governor has already shown his vision for a successful low-carbon energy economy in New York thorough the state’s path-breaking Reforming the Energy Vision initiative, and ACORE applauds his continued leadership with the proposed mandate for 50 percent renewables by 2030,” said Dan Reicher, Interim President and CEO of ACORE and Executive Director of the Steyer-Taylor Center for Energy Policy & Finance at Stanford University. “With the adoption of this mandate, New York would join an elite group of states reaching for 50 percent clean, renewable power that cuts carbon emissions and grows the economy.”

ACORE’s Chief Strategy Officer Todd Foley believes the investment dollars necessary to reach that goal are firmly in place. “As the finance capital of the world, New York is also well positioned to take advantage of the fast-growing trend on Wall Street to finance clean energy projects. Investing long-term in a pro-renewables energy system will ensure that the citizens of New York enjoy both a healthy environment and a prosperous economy for many years to come.”

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) said the announcement is an affirmation of solar power in the state. “Governor Cuomo’s plan to implement a 50 percent renewable portfolio standard (RPS) represents a strong endorsement for solar power as part of a responsible approach to a clean energy future. Solar is a job-creating American economic engine that will bring affordable and clean electricity to the Empire State for many decades to come,” said Rhone Resch, president and CEO of SEIA.

“A 50 percent RPS is a significant milestone toward addressing New York’s climate goals, and reaffirms the state as a leader in seizing the economic advantages of clean energy,” he added.

Kauffman said that the mechanism for the mandate will be through the State’s Public Service Commission. 

Lead image: Renewable energy concept. Credit: Shutterstock.

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