New York’s new Clean Energy Standard (CES) mandates cutting carbon emissions by 40 percent versus 1990 levels by 2030. This reflects the increasing level of public concern, if not alarm, about climate change. Even many skeptics about the specifics of climate change endorse reducing our carbon emissions.
The labor, business, and community organizations comprising the New York Affordable Reliable Electricity Alliance (New York AREA) also support clean energy — and we’re here to advocate for enough energy to power a strong and growing economy affordably and reliably for years to come.
As New York implements the CES, we know that our most potent asset is our nuclear fleet, emitting zero carbon as it pumps out electricity regardless of wind or weather year-round. Our state government is supporting struggling upstate nuclear plants — yet, paradoxically, it’s pushing to close our biggest plant, downstate’s Indian Point. And because renewables for baseload power are many years away, losing Indian Point would mean replacing it with fossil fuels pumping millions of tons of carbon and other pollutants into our air — a gigantic step backward.
To meet the ambitious goals of the CES, without Indian Point “you can’t get there from here.” New York needs to recognize that fact and support the communities, workers, and businesses who benefit — as does our environment — from keeping this essential plant up and running. It’s a crucial bridge to our clean energy future.
New York, N.Y.
DiFrancesco is director of New York Affordable reliable Electricity Alliance (AREA)