DEC and NYSERDA Announce Stakeholder Information Sessions on Development of Economywide Cap-and-invest Program to Reduce Climate Pollution
May 19, 2023
The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) today announced the first in a series of stakeholder information sessions on the development of the State’s economywide Cap-and-Invest Program to reduce the pollution driving climate change. The Cap-and-Invest Program was recommended by the Climate Action Council’s final Scoping Plan and was proposed in Governor Kathy Hochul’s 2023 State of the State Address and Executive Budget. DEC and NYSERDA are developing the program to meet the greenhouse gas emission reduction and equity requirements under the 2019 Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (Climate Act)
DEC Commissioner and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Basil Seggos said, “New York is taking significant steps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change, including the development of an economywide Cap-and-Invest Program carefully designed to decrease pollution while prioritizing affordability to support New York’s transition to a clean energy economy. This first phase of stakeholder sessions announced today will provide information about program elements and encourage New Yorkers’ input to help ensure we meet our ambitious emissions reduction requirements while we advance a cleaner, greener, and healthier environment.”
NYSERDA President and CEO and Climate Action Council Co-Chair Doreen M. Harris said, “New York State, under Governor Hochul’s leadership, has demonstrated its continued commitment to meet its ambitious climate goals, and designing a Cap-and-Invest Program will further help to accelerate our critical climate action efforts. The upcoming stakeholder sessions are opportunities for open and valuable feedback to help ensure that New York’s future Cap-and-Invest Program is created in a way that prioritizes affordability and equity while ensuring all New Yorkers benefit from our growing green economy.”
The first phase of pre-proposal webinars, scheduled throughout June, will provide an overview of New York’s potential program and similar programs designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in other states and jurisdictions. The webinars will present an opportunity for key stakeholders and the public to provide feedback on program design features. In addition, the presentation will include a link to a webpage where stakeholders can access the outline and questions and provide comments. All stakeholder input will be considered by staff as part of the program development.
These webinars will focus on obtaining input regarding anticipated program design details such as applicability and thresholds, allowance allocation and auction, stability mechanisms, compliance and enforcement, and reporting and verification. A second round of pre-proposal stakeholder outreach is expected to be held later this year.
For a full list of scheduled webinars, please see below. Recordings of the webinars will be posted online following the meetings. Additional information will be provided as it becomes available at capandinvest.ny.gov.
- June 1, 1 to 3 p.m. – Cap-and-Invest Overview
- June 6, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. - Natural Gas-focused webinar
- June 8, 1 to 3 p.m. - Liquid Fuels-focused webinar
- June 13, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Energy Intensive and Trade Exposed Industries-focused webinar
- June 15, 1 to 3 p.m. - Waste-focused webinar
- June 20, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Cap-and-Invest Analysis Inputs and Methods
- June 22, 1 to 3 p.m. - Electricity-focused webinar
In addition to these scheduled webinars, DEC and NYSERDA will continue to engage with various stakeholders regarding the development of the program, including around labor, equity, disadvantaged communities, and other key issues.
The Enacted FY 2023-24 Budget advances Governor Hochul’s priority to create an affordable, equitable, and effective Cap-and-Invest Program that promotes climate action, creates high-quality jobs, and protects and invests in disadvantaged communities. The Budget creates the Consumer Climate Action Account, which ensures not less than 30 percent of future proceeds will be provided to New Yorkers as a critical step toward protecting affordability. In addition, the Budget establishes a Climate Investment Account, which will direct two-thirds of future proceeds to support the transition to a less carbon-intensive economy. The Budget also creates a Climate Affordability Study process to provide recommendations on the most impactful use of funds to protect New Yorkers.
The program will prioritize the frontline, disadvantaged communities in our State that for far too long have suffered from pollution and environmental injustice. The program will not allow the use of offsets that could allow high-emitting sources to continue to pollute, and will instead be designed to ensure pollution burdens are reduced. Under Governor Hochul’s leadership, a minimum of 35 percent, with a goal of 40 percent, of the benefits of Cap-and-Invest resources will directly benefit disadvantaged communities, and the program will be designed to ensure pollution burdens are reduced in frontline communities.
Over the coming months, DEC and NYSERDA will design a Program that sets an annual cap on the amount of greenhouse gas pollution that is permitted to be emitted in New York. Every year, New York’s pollution cap will be set lower to meet the Climate Act’s greenhouse gas emission reduction requirements of 40 percent by 2030 and at least 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050. Large-scale greenhouse gas emissions sources and distributors of heating and transportation fuels will be required to purchase or obtain allowances for the emissions associated with their activities. Proceeds will support the State’s critical investments in climate mitigation, energy efficiency, clean transportation, and other projects, in addition to mitigating potential consumer costs associated with the Program.
For more information about New York’s climate efforts, visit the Climate Act website at climate.ny.gov.
New York State's Nation-Leading Climate Plan
New York State's nation-leading climate agenda calls for an orderly and just transition that creates family-sustaining jobs, continues fostering a green economy across all sectors and ensures that at least 35 percent, with a goal of 40 percent, of the benefits of clean energy investments are directed to disadvantaged communities. Guided by some of the nation's most aggressive climate and clean energy initiatives, New York is on a path to achieving a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040, including 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, and economy-wide carbon neutrality by mid-century. A cornerstone of this transition is New York's unprecedented clean energy investments, including more than $35 billion in 120 large-scale renewable and transmission projects across the state, $6.8 billion to reduce building emissions, $1.8 billion to scale up solar, more than $1 billion for clean transportation initiatives, and over $1.8 billion in NY Green Bank commitments. These and other investments are supporting more than 165,000 jobs in New York's clean energy sector in 2021 and a 2,100 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2011. To reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality, New York also adopted zero-emission vehicle regulations, including requiring all new passenger cars and trucks sold in the State be zero emission by 2035. Partnerships are continuing to advance New York's climate action with nearly 400 registered and 100 certified Climate Smart Communities, nearly 500 Clean Energy Communities, and the State's largest community air monitoring initiative in 10 disadvantaged communities across the state to help target air pollution interventions and combat climate change.
Haley Viccaro, DEC Press Office
Email: [email protected]
Email: [email protected]