We need to speak up for our energy future NOW.
The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) requires a radical restructuring of how New Yorkers generate and use energy in the state. It will ultimately dictate what kind of car you drive, and how you can heat your home or building. As you can imagine, it will cost billions of dollars, and have serious implications for the reliability of the electric grid.
Amazingly, this law set the most extreme targets in the country without spelling out how they could realistically be reached. That was left to the Climate Action Council (CAC), a group of political appointees.
So much at stake for New York families and businesses
The CAC’s final plan has now been submitted to Governor Hochul and the leaders of the legislature, to guide them in developing laws and regulations they will use to reach their goals. This course of action will create a host of problems for typical NY families and businesses. You can read much more about the plans and detailed, up-to-date analysis in the Resources section of this site. Among the most troubling aspects:
- The plans hinge almost entirely on the total electrification of energy in the state. They plan on eliminating all traditional fuels, even though there are serious questions about what will happen to the reliability of the power grid, huge costs to homes and businesses, and assumptions about technological breakthroughs that are being counted on to make this all work.
- They largely discounted the possibility that increasingly renewable versions of heating oil (Bioheat® fuel), renewable propane, and renewable natural gas could positively impact while reducing the costs and risks of total electrification.
- They would force home and building owners to convert their systems to electricity regardless of the costs, reliability or comfort issues. You would completely lose your freedom of choice in the matter. This is set to start in just a few years.
- They will impose a new type of Heat Tax- either a “carbon tax” or a “cap-and-invest” price scheme, to artificially drive up the cost of gasoline, natural gas, heating oil and propane. Every New Yorker will feel it.
- Extreme and dangerous burdens placed on an already unreliable electric grid. Firstly, the CLCPA will transition every car, truck, home and building onto the grid before we have the means to support the demand properly. Then, the grid itself will transition to new, untested power sources. Learn more here.
- Wealthy residents have the means to pay new taxes and cover pricy system conversions. They can afford back up power sources in case of blackouts. Some lower-income households may receive subsidies for updates. But a considerable number of working and middle-class families will have to shoulder the cost of this law.
While the law purports to be focused on the interests of everyday families, the reality is less reassuring. Wealthy residents have the means to pay new taxes and cover pricy system conversions. Some lower-income households may receive subsidies for updates. But a considerable number of working and middle-class families will have to shoulder the cost of this law.
Critical Benchmarks based on the CLCPA law and CAC plan
- Heating systems in all new home and business construction will be limited to full-electric heat pumps. Heating oil, Natural gas or propane systems will be banned for new construction.
- Localities are encouraged to move even faster by changing their building codes even if the state hasn’t.
- Deadline for a 40 percent reduction in emissions from the 1990 baseline.
- Mandates that 70 percent of the state’s electricity comes from renewables, up from 26.8 percent in 2018.
- If your heating system reaches the end of its useful life, you will be forced to convert your home or building to electricity, no matter the cost, comfort or reliability.
- Aiming for 100 percent zero-carbon emissions, the state will require almost every existing building to be fully electric.
- The electric grid fully transitions to zero-emissions sources.
If you are concerned that these plans are too risky, costly and narrow to support, let Governor Hochul and your legislators hear your voice.
We need a multifaceted approach to avoid severe impact on NY families and businesses.
We live in New York and recognize the great challenge posed by climate change. We believe we need to act aggressively to mitigate it. But the idea that we can only help save the planet by electrifying everything is overly simplistic and unrealistic.
Worse, it will likely backfire, undermining public support for significant climate action.
Traditional fuels like heating oil, natural gas and propane gas have already offered big improvements where environmental impact is concerned. On the home heating front, renewable components are being used with increasing frequency to create Bioheat® heating oil, renewable natural gas and renewable propane. Current home heating equipment runs much more efficiently than it used to, and with far fewer emissions.
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a Smarter NY Energy policy.