Assemblyman Steve Stern (D-Huntington, 10th AD) announced Assembly passage of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, which he co-sponsored, that sets critical environmental standards, including reductions in greenhouse gas emissions and increasing the use of renewable energy in order to address and mitigate the effects of climate change.
We are seeing the effects of climate change here on Long Island and around the world, Assemblyman Stern said. From stronger and more frequent devastating storms, drought, rising sea levels that have serious implications for coastal communities, extinctions and habitat devastation, climate change is real, accelerating and posing increasing challenges to public health and safety. It is imperative that we act decisively to protect our precious environment now and for generations to come. The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act sets real targets and invests in renewable energy technology to create jobs, and develop the technology of the future to replace fossil fuels.
The Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act would require that the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) establish:
- Statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits by regulation, to reduce emissions 85 percent by 2050;
- Regulations to achieve statewide greenhouse gas emissions reductions; and
- A process ensuring that a minimum of 35 percent of investments from clean energy and energy efficiency funds are invested in disadvantaged communities.
The legislation would also establish a Climate Justice Working Group, and create the New York State Climate Action Council, composed of stakeholders representing a wide range of business, community and environmental groups to develop guidelines, ensure public representation and outline recommendations for attaining statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits and the goal of net zero emissions in all sectors of the economy. The bill will also make investments in renewable energy sources a priority in New York State, requiring that 70 percent of the electric generation be produced by renewable energy systems by 2030.Climate change is accelerating in real time, Assemblyman Stern said. This is not an abstract problem, but one that is unfolding right before our eyes. We have an obligation to our children and their children to face this challenge and do what is necessary to mitigate the effects of climate change.