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Don’t Let State Lawmakers Swipe New York’s Clean Energy Funds

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The New York State Legislature wants to gain control of the state’s clean energy funds, formally known as the System Benefit Charge, which supports energy efficiency programs for homeowners and businesses, and the Renewable Portfolio Standard, which funds clean energy development.

In their recently adopted budget, the New York State Assembly and Senate agreed to subject clean energy funding to the politically charged, pork barrel politics of the state budget process. This would be a huge mistake.

Let Governor Pataki know that you urge him to veto the legislature’s proposal. Governor Pataki needs to know that he has your support.
New York’s clean energy investment is already generating big benefits:

  • New York has reduced its electricity use 
  • By means of energy efficiency, New Yorkers saved an estimated $195 million
  • New York has eliminated 1,000,000 tons of carbon dioxide–the equivalent of removing 200,000 automobiles from our roads
  • New York is building big renewable energy projects, like the Maple Ridge Wind Farm in Lewis County Projects like these are not only good for the environment, they are bringing jobs and much needed revenue to rural upstate communities. 

Let Governor Pataki know that you want him to keep us on the track toward a sustainable energy future, and protect the state’s clean energy funds.

Send a letter to the following decision maker(s): Governor George Pataki (if you live in NY)

Below is the sample letter:

Subject: Protect New York's Clean Energy Funds

Dear [decision maker name automatically inserted here],

The budget the legislature has sent to your desk includes language that would subject the state's clean energy funds to the annual budget process. These funds, which support the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority's (NYSERDA) work to improve energy efficiency and encourage the development of renewable energy projects, are critical to creating a clean, safe and sustainable energy future for New York State.

I appreciate your efforts to help create the programs supported by these funds. You have long been a supporter of efforts to develop renewable energy sources and to make more efficient use of the power New York already generates.

Environmental Advocates of New York and a growing list of environmental groups, renewable energy companies, labor unions, and businesses have all voiced their opposition to the legislature's proposal.

You have my support for vetoing the legislature's proposal for subjecting NYSERDA's clean energy funds to the annual budget process. I hope you will do so.

Sincerely,

cc: Assembly Member Sheldon Silver (if you live in NY)
Senator Joseph Bruno (if you live in NY)

What's At Stake:
The New York State Legislature wants to gain control of the state’s clean energy funds.

In their recently adopted budget, the New York State Assembly and Senate agreed to subject clean energy funding to the politically charged, pork barrel politics of the state budget process. This would be a huge mistake.

Let Governor Pataki know that you urge him to veto the legislature’s proposal. Governor Pataki needs to know that he has your support to veto this proposal.

This year New York will invest almost $200 million in renewable energy and energy efficiency. Of this investment, approximately $175 million will come from the System Benefit Charge and $24 million will come from the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard, which established
New York’s goal of generating one quarter of our power from renewable resources. This revenue is generated through a surcharge on our electricity bills that amounts to about a dollar for most consumers—a small investment with big benefits:

  • New York has reduced its electricity use by more than 1,400,000 megawatt hours and reduced peak demand by approximately three large coal-fired power plants worth of electricity.

  • Based on the efficiency measures these funds support, New Yorkers saved an estimated $195 million.

  • These funds have helped eliminate 1,280 tons of nitrogen oxide, 2,320 tons of sulfur dioxide, and 1,000,000 tons of carbon dioxide. The annual carbon dioxide reduction is equivalent to removing 200,000 automobiles from
    New York’s roadways.

  • Because of the state’s clean energy funds, projects are being built that generate large quantities of clean green energy, like the Maple Ridge Wind Farm in Lewis County. Projects like these are not only good for the environment, but are bringing jobs and much needed revenue to rural upstate communities. 

 

Let Governor Pataki know that you want to keep us on the track toward a sustainable energy future, and to protect the state’s clean energy funds. Add your voice to the organizations and groups listed below.

Environmental Groups

Adirondack Council, Environmental Advocates of New York, Global Warming Action Network of Central New York, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Natural Resources Defense Council, New York League of Conservation Voters, Open Space Institute, Pace Energy Project, Renewable Energy Long Island, Sierra Club-Atlantic Chapter, The Nature Conservancy – New York

Energy Companies & Organizations

Airtricity, Inc., Alliance for Clean Energy New York, Association for Energy Affordability, Bergey Windpower Co., BQ Energy, DayStar Technologies, Inc., Horizon Wind Energy, Independent Power Producers of New York, New York Solar Energy Industries Association, Noble Environmental Power, Plug Power Inc., PPM Atlantic Renewable

Business and Labor Groups

Environmental Business Association of New York, New York State Builders Association, New York State Council of Sheet Metal Workers, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers

Campaign Expiration Date: April 11, 2006

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