The CLCPA: Right Goal/Wrong Path
When the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) passed in 2019, few New Yorkers even knew what happened. Albany legislators set extreme, unrealistic targets for carbon reductions without specifying how those goals would be accomplished. In January, we finally learned the details of their plan. They are not good for NY families.
We strongly support action on climate change and decarbonization. However, the plans outlined by the Climate Action Council take us down a narrow, expensive and risky path, centered on limiting homeowner choice, preventing research and innovation and electrifying everything. The CLCPA has wide-ranging, harmful repercussions in New York, including the following:
- carbon taxes on gasoline, natural gas, propane gas and heating oil that could cost a typical family $20,000 over ten years.
- mandated conversion to heat pumps as early as 2030, enforced through surcharges that drive up the cost of regular systems—either way, expect a massive increase in cost.
- bans on fossil fuel equipment in any new construction within eight years.
- total prohibition of homes fueled by anything other than electricity within 12 years.
- Possible financial penalties for families who do not convert to electric heat pumps within the mandated timeline (even if your current HVAC system works fine).
- an overloaded electric grid that is even more vulnerable to crashing when transitioned to untested, unreliable sources, leading to increased cost and disruptions for everyday New Yorkers.
- lower state and local tax revenue as businesses flee our already overtaxed state.
- setting back vital research into carbon-neutral, renewable fuel sources that could more quickly impact climate change without imposing crippling costs on NY families.
New York needs a balanced energy policy that doesn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. We need a place for traditional fuels to help transition to a low carbon future by making improvements in their own emissions — not outlawing them.
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In the News
Check out blogs, articles and commentary about the implications of electrification and the impending energy disruption that the CLCPA could trigger.
The Empire Center of NY just released a study showing how the CLCPA will cost NY families hundreds of billions of dollars more than projected by the state, with huge repercussions.
Roger Caiazza, former Executive Director of the Environmental Energy Alliance of New York, has worked on electric grid reliability in NY for four decades and has been examining the CLCPA proposal and sharing important insights about its shortcomings.
On Robert Bryce’s Power Hungry Podcast, Meredith Angwin, author of Shorting the Grid: The Hidden Fragility of Our Electric Grid, discusses the issues and implications of electrification in detail.
To see updated articles and studies that affect your energy future, click here.
Multiple paths yield greater chances of success
Recent blackout crises in Texas, California, Louisiana and elsewhere are showing us the folly of relying too much on any one source of energy. Thousands of New Yorkers already experience blackouts every year. Now imagine the results if we push millions of homes, businesses and vehicles from traditional fuels to electricity, and shift even more peak load to the winter. Spoiler: They will not be good.
Fortunately, improvements are already underway in traditional fuels like natural gas, propane gas and heating oil that increase renewable content, reduce carbon and other harmful emissions, and increase equipment efficiency — all for a fraction of the cost of electrifying everything, and with far less disruption to families and businesses. We need to include these fuels in order to assure both a better climate and a secure, reliable energy supply — at a price tag that doesn’t crush NY families.
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