The Clean Energy Standard: New York’s Continuing Commitment to a Sustainable Future

EDF statement from Rory Christian, Director, New York Clean Energy

August 2, 2016
Mica Odom, (512) 691-3451,

(NEW YORK – August 2, 2016) New York strengthened its commitment to a clean energy future yesterday with the introduction of the state’s new Clean Energy Standard. Created by the New York Public Service Commission under Governor Cuomo’s directive, the new standard reinforces clean energy reforms underway throughout the state and outlines concrete steps to ensure New York will get 50 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2030.

The state will achieve its renewable energy goals using Renewable Energy Credits, and require all six New York investor-owned utilities and other energy suppliers to financially support struggling upstate nuclear power plants by compensating them for the value of the carbon emissions the plants avoid, using Zero-Emission Credits.

The Clean Energy Standard is supported by Reforming the Energy Vision (REV), New York’s unprecedented effort to create a more efficient, resilient, and reliable electric grid, align utility business models with policy objectives, and reduce pollution.

“With its commitment to reducing harmful pollution, boosting renewables, and slashing energy waste, New York continues to be ahead of the pack in the fight against climate change. By providing a much-needed roadmap for adding more renewables to the state’s energy mix, Governor Cuomo is transforming New York into a clean energy powerhouse.

“We are optimistic the proposed standard will achieve New York’s ambitious climate and energy goals, and are confident the state is open to expanding its approach to boosting renewables if the desired results don’t occur.

“EDF has long advocated for polluters to pay for the public health and other societal costs arising from burning fossil fuels. Zero-Emission Credits for nuclear power, though a subsidy for pollution avoidance rather than the preferred approach of internalizing externalities, constitute a first step toward taking the harm of carbon pollution seriously while meeting New York’s future energy needs with significantly more renewable energy resources like wind and solar.”

  • Rory Christian, Director, New York Clean Energy, Environmental Defense Fund

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