– Green Groups Deliver ‘Winning Plays’ To Gov Cuomo, NYS Legislature

January 12, 2012


Green Groups Deliver ‘Winning Plays’ To Gov Cuomo, NYS Legislature

2012 Green Playbook Outlines Policies for a Cleaner, Healthier & More Prosperous New York

ALBANY, NY (01/12/2012) – Environmental Advocates NY today released a list of 10 ‘winning plays’ for Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. The 2012 Green Playbook includes proposals designed to balance New York’s energy needs and bolster economic development while addressing high profile environmental challenges, including hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” for natural gas, climate-altering pollution, and the toxic contamination of our state’s industrial legacy.

“In his 2012 State of the State address, Governor Cuomo vowed to continue his efforts to revive New York’s stagnant economy and create new jobs in communities eager for economic development. Our 2012 Green Playbook shows how the Governor can fulfill these economic promises while safeguarding air and water quality and preserving and restoring our natural areas,” said David Gahl, Deputy Director, Environmental Advocates NY.

In public statements, Governor Cuomo has noted the link between environmental policy and economic development. The2012 Green Playbook introduces policies that responsibly tie the two. For instance, restoring the Environmental Protection Fund and leveraging monies for projects such as authorizing new conservation funding mechanisms by local governments to maximize return on state investments, would not only enhance and protect New York’s land, air and water, but also create badly needed jobs and revenue. But shortsighted decisions, such as opening the floodgates for industrial gas drilling called fracking without assessing impacts on human health or considering related costs to communities could result in air and water contamination and costly infrastructure.

“Dollars coming from Albany support 130 transit systems across the state. These dollars enable bus drivers to turn the key to their buses every morning, taking millions of people to work. The alternative is millions of car keys being turned, vastly increasing carbon emissions and energy consumption. Albany must step up support for public transit in order to protect our environment, and our economy,” said Kate Slevin, Executive Director Tri-State Transportation Campaign.

“For many years, the Environmental Protection Fund has played a critical role in protecting drinking water, safeguarding imperiled habitat, encouraging recycling, and funding zoos, botanical gardens and aquariums. And as Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative shows, the EPF is also an economic engine that is driving growth and creating new jobs,” said Dan Hendrick, communications director for the New York League of Conservation Voters. “In 2012, our state leaders can shift this economic engine into high gear by honoring past commitments to the EPF and identifying new revenue streams without raising taxes.”

“As the 2012 Green Playbook demonstrates, investing in the health of New York’s natural resources and ensuring the places we love most are protected for generations to come doesn’t mean turning our back on economic development or jobs. Measures such as creating new incentives for the solar photovoltaic industry and advancing the creation of smarter, less auto-dependent communities can energize long-term economic growth and create thousands of green jobs,” said Bill Cooke, Director of Government Relations, Citizens Campaign for the Environment.

Dan Hendrick of New York League of Conservation Voters, Nadine Lemmon with Tri-State Transportation Campaign, William Cooke of Citizens Campaign for the Environment, and Roger Downs with Sierra Club – Atlantic Chapter, spoke at the release of the playbook.

The Playbook include proposals to protect New York from the dangers of fracking; invest in solar energy; cut climate-altering pollution; strengthen the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative; invest in public transit; rebuild New York’s environmental agencies; restore the Environmental Protection Fund; reduce disposable bag use; fix the Brownfield Cleanup Program; and require the disclosure of toxic cleaning product ingredients.

Please refer to each memo for the list of endorsing organizations. The groups releasing the 2012 Green Playbook: Advice from New York State’s Environmental Organizations for the Governor and State Legislature are The Adirondack Council, Adirondack Mountain Club, Alliance for New York State Parks, American Lung Association in New York, Audubon New York, Citizens Campaign for the Environment, Environmental Advocates NY, Empire State Future, Long Island Pine Barrens Society, Open Space Institute, Natural Resources Defense Council, New York League of Conservation Voters, New York Public Interest Research Group, Sierra Club-Atlantic Chapter, The Nature Conservancy in New York, and Tri-State Transportation Campaign.