News Releases

Cuomo Urged to be National Climate Leader in 2016
Groups Urge Him to Support Off-shore Wind, 100% Renewables in State of the State
Time of End Fossil Fuel Era

Jan. 13, 2016

(Albany, NY) Climate change activists held a State of the Climate rally and march today at the Capitol to urge Governor Cuomo to urge him to commit to 100% renewable energy in his own speech and to announce the of the fossil fuel era in New York.

The themes of the rally were: Rapid action on climate change; support 100% Renewables Now; Climate Justice; Living Wage Jobs, and a Just Transition.

There are numerous pipelines and fossil fuel projects under construction or proposed that climate activists want the state to halt. They also want the state to commit to ensure a Just Transition, ensuring that the needs and voices of those most impacted by climate change are addressed. In Albany, oil bomb trains carrying Bakken Crude pass within feet of low-income neighborhoods on a daily basis.

Groups want the Governor to increase funding and support for renewable energy, especially the stalled development of offshore wind. They want him to adopt a comprehensive state climate action plan with benchmark and timelines; and invest in need infrastructure (e.g., charging stations for electric vehicles.) Many of these issues are being debated through the Public Service Commission’s Reforming Energy Vision process.

(see full release)

Cuomo’s Keystone Moment – Constitution, Pipelines

Cuomo’s Keystone Moment – Needs to Block Constitution Pipeline
Urged to Announce End of Fossil Fuels, Commit to 100% Renewables at SOS

Climate change activists are urging Governor Cuomo to announce in his State of the State (SOS) address this Wednesday that he will halt the Constitution Pipeline, along with the dozens of other proposed pipelines and fossil fuel infrastructure projects (e.g., Seneca Lake, CPV in Orange Co,) in the state.

“It is time for the Governor to officially announce that the era of fossil fuels is over and begin to use his power to stop the flood of natural gas and fossil fuel infrastructure projects that are swamping are state – including oil bomb trains and power plants. He needs to commit to moving to 100% clean energy as soon as possible for all our energy needs – not just electricity but buildings, transportation and agriculture,” said Mark Dunlea, Chair of the Green Education and Legal Fund.

(Full release)

Paris Treaty Highlights Need for NY to Increase Climate Goals
Nov. 2015

Climate change activists said today that the worldwide agreement in Paris which states that the target for global warming must be lowered to 1.5 degrees centigrade means that NY must double its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and transition to 100% renewables.

The 100% Renewables Now NY campaign released a letter (link here) it sent to Governor Cuomo outlining steps they hope he will announce in his upcoming State of the State. The group is helping to organize a State of the Climate rally and march at the Capitol on January 13.

The group urged Cuomo to be a national leader on climate change by moving quickly to 100% clean energy (e.g., by 2030), starting with a commitment to purchase 5,000 MW of off shore wind by 2025 and 10,000 MW by 2030. Off-shore wind turbines also help reduce the impact of hurricanes. Richard Kauffman, Cuomo’s energy czar, recently stated that he was opposed to such Power Purchase Agreements.

(full release here)

State Energy Master Plan Must End Fossil Fuel Era

(Albany, NY) Climate change activists said today that New York’s long delayed state energy master plan should formally end to fossil fuel era by immediately halting any further investment in fossil fuels, including upgrading its infrastructure. The final plan is expected to be released shortly.

The groups say that the state needs to set concrete targets and timelines for moving to 100% clean energy. Climate change action certainly needs to be much faster than the present goal of 80% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, which many feel will be inadequate to prevent catastrophic impacts from climate change.

For the rest, see GELF release

State’s Proposed $150 Million Annual Subsidy for Renewables Far Short of Dealing with Climate Change Crisis

Clean energy advocates called today upon the Governor and State Lawmakers to substantially increase the subsidies for large scale renewable energy (LSR) beyond the $1.5 billion over 10 years proposed this week by NYSERDA (NYS Energy Resource Development Authority).

The Green Education and Legal Fund noted that the subsidy is actually less, when adjusted for inflation, than what was provided over the last decade under the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard. The RPS failed miserably in achieving its goal of having renewables account for 30% of the state’s electrical production by 2015. Instead, the state added only 3 to 4% to the existing base of 19% (mainly hydro).

For the rest, see release

Legislation Introduced for 100% Clean Energy in NYS by 2030; Divestment, Carbon Tax

Legislation has been introduced to make New York State be the first state in the U.S. to go to 100% clean energy, with a target date of 2030. This would put New York ahead of states such as Hawaii (100% by 2045) and California (50% renewable energy by 2030). “We need bold action to avoid climate change’s worst impacts, and we need to act now,” said Prof. Steve Breyman.

Legislation is also being introduced that would require New York State and city public pension funds to divest from fossil fuel companies. Bills related to a carbon tax are expected shortly.

For the rest, see

70 Groups Call for NYS to Adopt Goal of 100% Clean Energy by 2030
April 19, 2015

More than 70 environmental, faith and labor groups today announced they are launching a campaign on Earth Day to require New York State to transition to 100% clean energy by 2030.

The groups have asked Governor Cuomo to amend the existing Executive Order for an 80% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 to a 100% clean energy goal by 2030. The groups plan to introduce state legislation as well.

The campaign builds upon the Jacobson wind, water and solar (WWS) study by Stanford and Cornell Professors, among others. The WWS study shows that it is technologically feasible for New York to produce zero net carbon emissions by 2030, using only technologies that are commercially available today. The campaign will seek to overcome the political obstacles to achieving this. The goal pertains to energy for all purposes, including transportation, heating/cooling, and agriculture. The groups want the state to fund a more detailed plan on the concrete steps and timelines needed to make this a reality.

“While New York officials can point to positive steps they have taken to support renewable energy and better manage the power distribution system, it is not enough to deal with the threat from climate change. And they continue to support hundreds of millions of dollars of investment in coal and fossil fuel infrastructure while impeding the development of clean energy, starting with off shore wind,” said Mark Dunlea of the Green Energy and Legal Fund, which is helping to coordinate this campaign.

see rest at

Greens Criticize Cuomo re Raid of Climate Change Funds, Bail out of Coal

March 26, 2015

 The Green Education and Legal Fund (GELF) criticized Governor Cuomo today for his apparent successful raid of almost a third of the state’s carbon pollution fund ($41 million), his push to bailout coal plants to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, and his blocking through LIPA of off-shore wind projects.

“While the Governor has taken some positive steps to promote renewable energy, he has made more than his fair share of bad decisions. He needs to support a 21st century energy system and stop promoting dirty old technology. The state’s progress in increasing renewables has fallen way short of the goal of 30% of the state’s electricity by 2015. He needs to start providing leadership on off-shore wind and end his efforts to bailout the coal industry and otherwise expand the fossil fuel infrastructure,” said Mark Dunlea, President of the Green Education and Legal Fund.

see rest at

Greens Oppose Cuomo and Senate’s Plans to Raid Carbon Pollution Fund
Call Instead for Massive Investment in Renewable Energy and Conservation

March 18, 2015

The Green Education and Legal Fund (GELF) today joined other environmental groups in opposing the Governor and Senate’s push to raid the state’s climate action fund (Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative).

Governor Cuomo budget proposes diverting $36 million from RGGI into the general fund; the recent Senate budget bill increased that to $64 million (some of which would go into the Environmental Protection Fund (EPF)).

see rest at

Leave a Comment