Environmental Advocates NY Reacts to the Recently Passed 2021 NYS Budget

For Immediate Release: April 8, 2021

Albany – The Governor and State Legislature have come to an agreement on the SFY 2021-22 state budget, which includes many environmental priorities, including $500 million for water infrastructure, $300 million for the Environmental Protection Fund, a $3 billion environmental bond act, $20 million for  electrifying public transit, and standardization of renewable energy projects. 

Peter M. Iwanowicz, Executive Director of Environmental Advocates NY said, “New York has once again delivered for the environment with this year’s budget. Despite many challenges, New York’s leaders have shown they understand that investing in programs that improve and protect water quality and environmental resiliency projects now will boost our economy and benefit future generations. Similarly, support for clean energy projects will protect our health while also improving the economy. We thank New York’s leaders for their continued commitment to New York’s environment.” 

Clean Water Infrastructure 

Rob Hayes, Director of Clean Water at Environmental Advocates NY said, “Creating good-paying jobs and protecting public health is exactly what we need right now to give our economy a shot in the arm. We’re thrilled to see such strong support for building the next generation of water infrastructure and welcome this effort to ensure communities don’t lose access to clean water. We applaud state lawmakers for rising to the occasion and look forward to similar investments in future budgets.” 

Community Clean Energy Funding 

Conor Bambrick, Director of Climate Policy at Environmental Advocates NY said, “Unfortunately, the executive insists on nickel-and-diming climate funds raised through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), which is why we need a dedicated climate funding source like the Climate and Community Investment Act (CCIA). The CCIA is designed to help the state fund an equitable transition to a renewable energy future by holding polluters accountable for the pollution they emit. The billions of dollars raised will be invested in communities most impacted by climate change to fund renewable energy and energy efficiency projects, and will create tens of thousands of good green jobs.” 

Environmental Bond Act 

Kate Kurera, deputy director at Environmental Advocates NY said, “We applaud state lawmakers for working together to include an environmental bond act measure on next year’s ballot. Studies have shown that a bond act will create tens of thousands of good green jobs, help New York’s economy recover from the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, and protect our state’s natural resources for future generations. This would not have been possible without the tireless advocacy of many grassroots, labor, and environmental organizations. We are hopeful that such broad support for the measure will translate into a YES vote by New Yorkers in 2022.”