New York Governor Andrew Cuomo issued an order, codified by law, calling for carbon emissions to be reduced by at least 40 % by that date and by 85 % by 2050. And within 20 years, the state should achieve zero emissions in the power sector.
By 2035, the state is to install 9,000 MW of wind power, 4,000 MW of energy storage and 6,000 MW of solar energy – twice current levels.
At the moment, New York State secures 28 % of its power from renewable sources – most of it from hydroelectric power. That figure underscores the difficulty in taking on such an ambitious task of bringing the figure to 70 % and the need for serious investment.
State officials intend to ensure that a total of 4.5 gigawatt hours of capacity is brought on stream annually (compared to the previous goal of 1.5 gigawatt hours) and to provide financial help for existing renewable energy sites, mostly hydroelectric and solar facilities. They will also authorise new applications for wind power facilities ranging from 750 to 100 MW from 2021 to 2027.
The state also pledged to pay greater attention to upgrading existing power infrastructure. A year ago, the state announced that it had allocated $1.5 billion to support 20 major solar and wind power projects as well as storage. The projects are to be completed by 2022 with a combined total capacity of 1.65 gigawatts.
New York is by no means the only U.S. State transitioning to “green” energy under public policy. California plans to secure all its power from renewable sources by 2045 and Hawaii has set a similar date for its transition to clean electric power.