$18.1 Million Available for Development of Innovative Nature-Based Solutions to Lower Emissions, Sequester Carbon
Funding Will Support Innovation to Help Scale Sustainable Solutions
October 12, 2022
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that $18.1 million is now available through the Natural Carbon Solutions Innovation Challenge for the development of innovative nature-based solutions that lower emissions and sequester carbon through novel products and services. The funding will support innovation, help build capacity, inform policy, and refine best practices to enable the scaling of sustainable solutions. Today's announcement supports the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 85 percent by 2050.
"New York is leading the fight against climate change by spurring innovation and revolutionizing the ways we reduce carbon emissions," Governor Hochul said. "The $18.1 million available today will help attract companies with cutting-edge technologies, knowledge, and products to lower carbon emissions and create a more resilient, cleaner future for New Yorkers."
The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), which will administer the funding through its Natural Carbon Solutions Challenge, is seeking proposals from private companies, research institutions, and other organizations for innovative solutions that produce low-emissions products or sequester carbon in durable materials. Solutions of interest include methods to increase carbon sequestration, reduce waste methane emissions, and support the needs of New York's building stock, particularly for building shell retrofits and new construction that are key to achieving New York's energy conservation goals. In addition, this solicitation seeks approaches that can benefit underserved communities and environmental justice areas by using novel approaches to optimize land use to increase carbon sequestration, resilience and renewable energy deployment, reducing air and water pollution, providing cost savings for energy services, and stimulating job creation in climate smart industries.
New York State Energy Research and Development Authority President and CEO Doreen M. Harris said, "New York State is an innovation pioneer and as we look to achieve our ambitious clean energy goals, we must lead the way in stewarding our natural resources to benefit the climate. When we bring innovative solutions to scale, we energize the supply chain, and this directly impacts local communities by stimulating their economies and creating family-sustaining jobs of the future."
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Basil Seggos said, "This significant investment to ensure solutions to reduce emissions and sequester carbon in the development of products and services in New York will help us reach our target of decreasing greenhouse gas emissions 85 percent by 2050 as required in the nation-leading Climate Act. The funding announced by Governor Hochul will provide companies with the tools they need to supply advanced technologies that decarbonize our economy and ensures a cleaner, greener future in our efforts to protect the environment and tackle climate change."
New York State Agriculture Commissioner Richard A. Ball said, "New York State has always been a leader in innovation, which is exactly the approach we need to tackle climate change in a big way. I'm proud of the role agriculture is taking to address climate change, as well as the work of all of our partners on the Climate Action Council. The Natural Carbon Solutions Innovation Challenge is yet another tool we as a State will now have to lower emissions and sequester carbon, helping us to reach our goals for a more sustainable future."
NYSERDA will accept applications through November 29, 2022. To learn more about this program, please register attend the NYSERDA webinar on Thursday, November 3, 2022 from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m. Funding for this initiative is provided through the State's 10-year, $6 billion Clean Energy Fund and the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
Today's announcement builds on New York State's investments in research, development, and commercialization to support innovators and companies accelerating the low emissions and carbon sequestering technologies needed to meet the state's goal for economy-wide carbon neutrality. NYSERDA's Innovation [PDF] program is deploying $800 million over 10 years as direct investments via grants and wrap around commercialization support. More than $680 million in private investments and $200 million in project finance capital have been created, and more than 450 innovative clean energy products have been commercialized as a result of NYSERDA's technology and business development investments, including LED lighting systems, home appliances, longer-lasting batteries, and more efficient heating-and-cooling systems.
State Senator Michelle Hinchey said, "New York is all-in on the fight against the climate crisis, and the latest round of the Natural Carbon Solutions Innovation Challenge is a critical step toward meeting our CLCPA goals. This model program incentivizes businesses to take bold, forward-looking action on climate-smart solutions, like carbon sequestration and emissions reduction, demonstrating the kind of cooperative effort we need to protect our planet for New Yorkers for generations to come."
Assemblymember Michael Cusick said, "Making investments of this sort to stimulate innovative thinking to reduce emissions is critical and will help move New York closer to achieving our Climate Act greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal - positively impacting all New Yorkers and securing a clean, healthier future for all."
Assemblymember Donna Lupardo said, "I am very happy to see NYSERDA promoting the Natural Carbon Solutions Innovation Challenge. In order to meet the state's aggressive climate goals, we have to actively promote natural carbon sequestration and emission reduction in new and innovative ways. This is also what we had in mind when Sen. Hinchey and I passed the Soil Health and Climate Resiliency Act; acknowledging the significant role New York agriculture can play. What we need now is sustainable support for these scalable initiatives."
New York State's Nation-Leading Climate Act
New York State's nation-leading climate agenda is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy as New York State recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. Enshrined into law through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York is on a path to achieve its mandated goal of a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040, including 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, and to reach economy wide carbon neutrality. It builds on New York's unprecedented investments to ramp-up clean energy including over $35 billion in 120 large-scale renewable and transmission projects across the state, $6.8 billion to reduce buildings emissions, $1.8 billion to scale up solar, more than $1 billion for clean transportation initiatives, and over $1.6 billion in NY Green Bank commitments. Combined, these investments are supporting nearly 158,000 jobs in New York's clean energy sector in 2020, a 2,100 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2011 and a commitment to develop 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035. Under the Climate Act, New York will build on this progress and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050, while ensuring that at least 35 percent with a goal of 40 percent of the benefits of clean energy investments are directed to disadvantaged communities, and advance progress towards the state's 2025 energy efficiency target of reducing on-site energy consumption by 185 trillion BTUs of end-use energy savings.