NEW YORK (WWTI) – Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced today he is advancing a 30-day budget amendment to dramatically speed up the permitting and construction of renewable energy projects, combat climate change and grow the state’s green economy.
If adopted, the Accelerated Renewable Energy Growth and Community Benefit Act will create a new Office of Renewable Energy Permitting to improve and streamline the process for environmentally responsible and cost-effective siting of large-scale renewable energy projects across New York.
A mandate is included under the state’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act to obtain 70 percent of the state’s electricity from renewable sources.
“Climate change is the existential challenge of our time, and New York State has risen to the occasion by enacting the strongest laws in the nation to protect and preserve our environment,” Governor Cuomo said. “This legislation will help achieve a more sustainable future, invigorating the green economy and reaffirming New York’s position as a market leader with a revamped process for building and delivering renewable energy projects faster.”
The new structure created by the Act centralizes renewable energy siting and permitting activities within the Department of Economic Development. The structure also creates, separately, a new program through which the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority will collaborate with the Department of Environmental Conservation and Department of Public Service to develop build-ready sites for renewable energy projects.
The legislation reframes the renewable energy development process with the following major components:
- Establish Office of Renewable Energy Permitting
- Clean Energy Resources Development and Incentives Program
- Host Communities Benefit Program
- Grid Planning and Energy Delivery Constraint Relief (Transmission)
- New York State’s Green New Deal
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