The following statement is attributable to Conor Bambrick, Director of Climate Policy at Environmental Advocates NY and Annel Hernandez, Associate Director at NYC Environmental Justice Alliance
“One year ago, New York made history as Governor Cuomo signed one of the world’s most ambitious climate plans into law. The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act prioritizes environmental justice and specifically directs a 35% share of all of New York’s clean energy spending to communities on the frontline of climate change. As the law is celebrating its first year, it is also facing its first real test.
Now, for the first time in nearly a decade, New York is amending the regulations that govern how it sets limits on power plant carbon pollution through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). The final regulations must align with the climate law to ensure that disadvantaged communities receive at least 35% of the overall RGGI spending. Additionally, the regulations should require the State to study how environmental justice communities are impacted by RGGI, including an equity analysis of the distribution of funds and other climate investments.
If the final regulations include these measures, the Climate law will have cleared its first hurdle and New Yorkers can be assured that New York is on the right path in focusing on justice and equity as it fights climate change.”