Today Marks Day One of the 2021 NYS Legislative Session

The following quote can be attributed to Peter M. Iwanowicz, executive director of Environmental Advocates NY:

“If 2020 will be known for its challenges, let 2021 be known for our revival.

While the COVID-19 pandemic has decimated budgets and even stopped a $3 billion Environmental Bond Act, the need for investment in our environment has only grown. With last year likely to be the hottest year on record and COVID-19 causing more deaths in those forced to breathe air pollution—mainly those in Black and Brown communities—the time for sweeping action is now. The Legislature must continue to support funding for water infrastructure and clean energy, two components of our revival that will improve health, stimulate the economy and create good jobs.

Finally, every New Yorker, regardless of the color of their skin, where they live, or how much money they have, has the right to clean air and water. The Legislature can affirm this principle by giving second passage to an amendment that would add an Environmental Bill of Rights to the State Constitution.

This year is going to be difficult, but there is a lot of important work to do. We are excited about the upcoming Legislative session and look forward to working with Governor Cuomo, Majority Leader Stewart-Cousins and the Senate, and Speaker Heastie and the Assembly to make it a successful one.”

Since its formation in 1969, Environmental Advocates NY has been championing environmental policies that have improved health, enhanced the quality of New York’s natural resources, and saved lives.

This year Environmental Advocates NY is calling on the state legislative and executive branch to:

  • Secure much-needed funding for water infrastructure in the state budget, which will create good-paying jobs, stimulate the economy and ensure clean water for all.
  • Secure and retain funding in the state budget to ensure that state agencies and local governments have the resources to protect our environment and uplift overburdened communities.
  • Develop and release for public input the Climate Action Plan required by New York’s landmark climate law, The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.
  • Adopt the Climate and Community Investment Act to establish a polluter penalty that will fund the just and equitable transition to a renewable energy economy.
  • Pass the Environmental Bill of Rights (also known as the Green Amendment) to guarantee all New Yorkers the right to clean air, clean water and a healthful environment.

To learn about Environmental Advocates NY’s full 2021 Action Agenda, please visit