Jan. 4, 2012
Contact: Dan Hendrick, (212) 361-6350 ext. 206
State of the State address
focuses on infrastructure, water quality,
energy efficiency and solar energy
NEW YORK - The environment and clean energy were front and center in Gov. Andrew Cuomo's 2012 State of the State address, playing more prominent roles in the state's agenda than they have in years.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo"For too long, New York has sat idly by as its sustainability challenges mounted," said Marcia Bystryn, president of the New York League of Conservation Voters. "Today, Governor Cuomo made a serious commitment to caring for our natural resources, rebuilding vital infrastructure and transitioning to a clean-energy future. We are particularly heartened that Governor Cuomo is moving in the right direction on solar energy; he clearly understands solar's tremendous potential to create much-needed jobs and improve New York's economy. We look forward to working with the governor and members of the Legislature to advance these and other priorities as the 2012 session unfolds."
Among the most important environment, transportation and energy issues outlined in Gov. Cuomo's Building a New New York Plan are:
- Improving dozens of New York State Parks that are in the greatest need of repair, by creating the New York Works Fund.
- Offering nearly a billion dollars in low-cost loans to municipalities to repair 90 waste water treatment plants. The loans will help improve the quality of our coastal waters, lakes, rivers and streams by bring municipalities into compliance with the Clean Water Act.
- Creating green jobs, improving energy efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by retrofitting state-owned facilities and accelerating an energy efficiency program for homeowners.
- Facilitating the growth of wind energy through a new "Energy Highway" that will connect wind farms with population centers.
- Committing to doubling the amount of solar energy capacity in New York by the end of the year and quadrupling it by 2013 through the NY-Sun Program.
- Protecting open space and bolstering sustainable agriculture through Farm-NY, a series of measures that will help farmers stay competitive, expand farmers markets and build distribution hubs to improve the availability of New York-grown food.
- Repairing dams and improving flood control through the New York Works Fund, to address critical infrastructure problems and help communities adapt to a changing climate.
The New York League of Conservation Voters (NYLCV) was founded in 1989 as a nonpartisan, policy-making and political action organization that works to make environmental protection a top priority with elected officials, decision makers, and voters by evaluating incumbent performance and endorsing and electing environmental leaders to office in New York State.