Assembly Committee OKs Major Solar Energy Initiative
Submitted by Dan Hendrick on Thu, 2012-05-03 12:32.
One of NYLCV's top legislative priorities of the year got a big boost last Tuesday.
The Assembly Energy Committee approved the Solar Jobs Act (bill number A.9149-a), which seeks to make New York a leader in solar energy, while creating much-needed jobs and domestic sources of energy.
The bill now goes to the Assembly Ways & Means Committee for a vote. NYLCV is encouraging the State Senate and the chairman of its Energy Committee, Sen. George Maziarz, to introduce a similar bill in the upper house of the Legislature.
The Solar Jobs Act is supported by a growing coalition of labor, business and environmental organizations. It would create a robust solar market, ensuring that 3,000 megawatts of New York State's power supply would come from solar energy.A new report, U.S. Solar Market Insight: Year-in-Review 2011, issued by GTM Research and the Solar Energy Industries Association, showed New York is falling further behind nearby states in terms of solar energy - and the jobs the industry brings.
Unlike surrounding states, New York does not currently have a binding, long term megawatt goal for solar energy, thus compelling the market to pursue opportunities elsewhere. It is unlikely that the solar industry will invest on a large scale in the state until New York adopts such a policy.
"Solar energy isn't just the right thing to do for the environment. Right now, New York is losing our competitive advantage to other states like New Jersey that have robust, long-term solar programs," said NYLCV President Marcia Bystryn. "New York needs those economic benefits and new jobs now more than ever, and that's why solar must be a big part of our state's energy future."
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