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A Letter on the Clean Energy Standard

May 12, 2016
by

To The Editor:

Governor Cuomo announced the goal of generating 50% of NYS’ electricity from renewable sources by 2030. In order to achieve that goal the Public Service Commission (PSC), the chief regulator of utilities in NY, has announced the development of a “Clean Energy Standard” (PSC Case Number: 15-E-0302) that will put meat on the bones of the state’s goal.

The Clean Energy Standard will have economic and environmental consequences for all New Yorkers. This is especially true in Croton, which, as a waterfront community, is particularly susceptible to the effects of climate change, and is located a few miles from Indian Point (and a pipeline expansion project). In addition, Croton residents, as ConEd customers, pay some of the highest electric rates in the country.

According to the a preliminary analysis by the PSC, under the draft proposal, the state would invest over $3B to support renewable energy generation. Eligible power sources would include hydro, nuclear, solar and wind.

Regardless of what you may think of the Clean Energy Standard—and there is a lot to digest—the PSC should make a reasonable effort to inform the public and solicit public comment.

That’s why I was disappointed to learn that the PSC will be conducting a campaign of public hearings and information sessions, but that they have no stops scheduled in Westchester County. Indeed, the closest information sessions will be in Kingston, NY and New York City.

Given the complexity of the Clean Energy Standard and its importance for our community, I think that our region deserves to have a hearing and information session of its own. That’s why I have contacted the Public Service Commission to share my concerns about this and encouraged the Village administration to suggest to the PSC that they hold at least one additional hearing and information session to include Westchester County.

For those who would like to learn more about the Clean Energy Standard on their own, a PSC presentation recorded on May 4 is available (www.dps.ny.gov/Webcasts.html). You can also comment on the proceeding via the PSC’s website or telephone using the PSC’s Opinion Line: 1-800-335-2120

Sincerely,

Brian Pugh

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