As the cleanup of hurricane Sandy continues along its battered coastline, NY is going green, getting serious about clean energy and climate change.
Yesterday, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced $150 million per year in funding for the NY-Sun initiative, designed to quadruple customer-sited solar capacity in New York State.
According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the program will:
- provide certainty to solar developers
- create quality jobs
- improve the reliability of the electric grid
- reduce air pollution
- attract significant private investment in solar photovoltaic systems
- enable the sustainable development of a robust solar power industry in New York
Carrie Cullen Hitt, senior vice president for state affairs at SEIA, says this is part of a package of proposals that are bringing New York out of the fossil-fuel clouds and into the sunlight:
“The NY-Sun Initiative has put New York State at the forefront of new solar deployment, creating clean-economy jobs while containing energy costs for consumers.
This expansion of the NY-Sun Initiative, the creation of a $1 billion green bank, as well as the appointment of former Department of Energy official Richard Kauffman as New York State’s chairman for energy policy and finance, will ensure that solar becomes an increasingly significant component in New York’s energy portfolio while supporting solar’s affordability for more New York State families and businesses.”
Hitt adds that solar is the fastest-growing energy source in the US, up 500 percent since the Beginning of the Obama administration – from 1,100 megawatts to more than 6,400 megawatts. And America’s solar industry now employs more than 119,000 workers at 5,600 companies, mostly small businesses.