New York continues to move on energy efficiency, storage and solar power

New York State is introducing aggressive development plans despite federal government indifference to climate change. 

Late last year, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that the state’s Public Service Commission had approved two initiatives that will increase New York’s energy efficiency and energy storage targets as it strives to tackle climate change. 

The new energy efficiency target for investor-owned utilities will more than double utility energy efficiency progress by 2025, reducing the state’s energy consumption by the equivalent of supplying 1.8mn households. Meanwhile, the energy storage initiative sets the state on a trajectory for achieving 1.5 GW of storage by 2025 – and up to 3 GW by 2030. 

To meet the energy efficiency target, the state says will help its building developers, commercial and institutional building owners, industrial facilities and residential households to pursue improvements that reduce state-wide energy consumption. 

If it meets this target, New York will have delivered nearly one-third of its greenhouse gas reduction goal of 40% by 2030, says the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority (NYSERDA). 

Meanwhile, the state is also working to avoid more than one million tons of carbon pollution by introducing and integrating a comprehensive network of energy storage solutions. To this end, the Public Service Commission has adopted a strategy to address barriers that have been preventing energy storage technologies from competing in the energy marketplace. 

The intervention by the Commission is intended to accelerate the market learning curve, drive down costs and speed up project deployment. New York also hopes to create some 30,000 jobs in the clean-tech industry while it pursues its energy storage and efficiency objectives. 

Just days after the new targets were approved, NYSERDA announced that the largest community solar project in New York City has been completed and was operational. 

Located in Brooklyn, the 1.2 MW solar array is providing energy to residents and small businesses and is part of Governor Cuomo’s mandate for half of all electricity consumed to come from renewables by 2030. 

‘We're investing in projects and programmes to advance our aggressive energy goals across the state,’ says Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. ‘While the federal government has turned its back on energy initiatives to reduce consumption and greenhouse gases, New York is leading the nation to ensure a cleaner and greener environment.’

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