New York State has initiated a series of in-state policies and programs to address climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In 1998, the State established a System Benefit Charge (SBC), levied on the sale of electricity, to support energy efficiency, renewable energy, energy technology research, and environmental research. As administrator of the SBC, NYSERDA launched the New York Energy $mart programs, a variety of research and technology development initiatives that, by the end of 2005, had achieved an annual savings of 1,950 GWh of electricity from energy efficiency and on-site generation, avoiding the emission of 1,750 tons of nitrogen oxides (NOx), 3,170 tons of sulfur dioxide (SO2), and 1.4 million tons of carbon dioxide (CO2). New York also established a Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) to ensure that more of the electricity provided to customers in the state comes from renewable sources. Executive orders have directed state agencies and authorities to increase energy efficiency and diversify fuel sources in state buildings and vehicles.
Source: Kavitha Mukund.
New York has also been among the leaders in addressing greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, adopting California’s regulatory framework for transportation fuels. Starting with the 2009 model year, vehicle manufacturers will be required to meet a fleet average standard of emissions of CO2, methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), and hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), a standard that becomes more stringent each year through 2016. Estimates indicate that the regulations will result in a reduction of 15 million tons of CO2 emissions by 2020 and 26 million tons of CO2 emissions by 2030.
In addition to these initiatives, New York State created a 12-person Office of Climate Change, and several bills concerning climate change have been submitted to the New York State Senate.