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March 13, 2023
Contact: Lee Ziesche, info@publicpowerny.org, 954-415-6228

“Build Public Renewables is a good deal for New York’s wallet”

Report finds New York is missing out on billions in IRA incentives by blocking climate bill, as Legislature and Governor battle over role of public power in state budget

New York, New York – A new report found that not only is it possible for the New York Power Authority (NYPA) to replace all its fossil fuel generation with renewables by 2030, failure to do so will lose New Yorkers billions of dollars.

The report identified “unprecedented” financial incentives created by the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) that NYPA cannot currently take advantage of as long as it is prohibited from building renewable energy projects.

According to the report, New York could save an additional $1.2 billion through 2050 by shutting down polluting, state-owned fossil power plants in Environmental Justice communities and building healthier and cheaper renewable generation.

The authors of the report recommended that NYPA accelerate its decarbonization timeline from 2035 to 2030 to align with the goals of the Build Public Renewables Act (BPRA) – popular climate legislation that would unleash the power of public funding and allow NYPA to build and own renewable energy.

The Public Power NY Coalition released the following statement:

“Polling shows the Build Public Renewables Act is incredibly popular and this report proves that it’s a good deal for New York’s wallet. It’s a no-brainer for Governor Hochul and the state legislature to include the full bill in the budget this year. If the bill had passed last session, the New York Power Authority could be taking advantage of unprecedented public funding right now, but instead we’re missing out on IRA dollars that could be spent building healthier and more affordable energy for our communities. We thank the Senate for passing BRPA so quickly this year and look to Speaker Heastie and the Assembly to show the same commitment to climate leadership in their one-house budget proposal due soon.”

Polling released last year showed that over 80% of democratic voters support the passage of BPRA and the senate made passing the bill a top-priority early in the session.

Governor Hochul included elements of public power in her budget proposal that would allow NYPA to build and own renewable energy, but removed nation leading labor, accountability, and environmental justice standards included in BPRA, as well as a mandate ensuring NYPA actually would build the renewable energy needed to reach state climate mandates.

The report found NYPA is well positioned to drive higher labor standards for building renewable energy projects. With the strongest labor and just transition language that energy unions have ever seen, BPRA could be a powerful tool for unionizing the largely non-union renewables industry.


Note to the editor: The report was prepared by Brendan Pierpont, independent climate and energy researcher and Matthew Eckel, seasoned policy researcher, on Behalf of Public Power NY Coalition

About Public Power NY

The Public Power NY Coalition is a statewide movement of community and advocacy organizations, and thousands of New Yorkers fighting to pass the Build Public Renewables Act, the nation’s biggest climate bill. It will enable New York to unleash the New York Power Authority, the country’s largest public power provider, to build publicly owned, 100% renewable energy; slash energy costs for those who need it most; and create tens of thousands of green union jobs that will finally unionize the green energy sector. The bill is endorsed by unions representing over 1 million members in New York including 1199SEIU, NYSUT, PSC-CUNY, UUP, and UAW 9A.