Renewable Solutions to Gas
Keep writing until JULY! Tell Governor Cuomo and NY Public Service Commission:
The answer to ConEd's gas moratorium is renewables, not more fracked gas infrastructure.
TODAY is our opportunity to demand Governor Cuomo address the climate crisis now.
Since the corporate utility and the fossil fuel industry claim there is no gas left for new development, we have one option: To mandate 100% renewable heat now. New Yorkers deserve to be provided the resources to get off gas and have renewable heat and energy efficient buildings for a resilient future.
Some talking points that you may want to use to tailor your letter:
Con Ed's announced moratorium is a manufactured crisis to keep fossil fuel business as usual.
We see this announcement as an opportunity to challenge our current utility model in New York State and to align it with our renewable energy goals.
New York has taken great steps in climate leadership for the nation, like banning fracking and halting other detrimental fracking infrastructure projects. It continues to be New York’s responsibility to drive environmental leadership in this nation and to implement the solutions that are here today.
We have the solutions including geothermal, air-source heat pumps, community solar, offshore wind and energy efficiency, and it is time to declare an end to the fossil fuel era.
Consolidated Edison (ConEd) recently announced that its gas system in parts of Westchester County has reached capacity and that it will impose a moratorium on new gas starting March 15. This has led to panic among some business leaders and local elected officials concerned that this will lead to economic downfall. Additionally, the announcement has created the false notion that current residential customers will not be able to heat and cook in their homes. In fact, the moratorium does not affect current gas customers, and we must highlight that there are renewable alternatives for developers and residents who are impacted by the moratorium. Many local elected officials and residents have rightly seen the moratorium for what it is -- a crossroads in the transition to renewable energy in New York. They have advocated for a measured approach that supports the ability of residents to heat and cook, but avoids costly and unnecessary investments in fossil fuel infrastructure.
We must seize this opportunity to challenge the current utility model in New York State and to align it with our renewable energy goals. The ConEd gas moratorium represents a moment in which we can and must decide what kind of heating and cooking energy we will invest in. For new development or customers seeking to transition from dirty and expensive fuel oil, cost effective renewable heating and cooking options can and should be provided through heat pumps and efficient electric stoves.
The utility company and some developers want to continue business as usual, tying our economy to fracked gas, while making current gas customers pay for more gas infrastructure, when ConEd’s system is at capacity.
Yet, the climate science clearly indicates that we must dramatically reduce our use of fossil fuels, and Governor Cuomo has been equally clear with recent commitments to support renewable heating and cooling and to dramatically reduce New York’s greenhouse gas emissions.
ConEd’s moratorium on new gas customers should be allowed to stand and should be allowed to become permanent. There are viable renewable options for heating available now and these should be adopted in all new construction going forward. The alternative, continuing to invest in more gas infrastructure is undeniably irresponsible from an economic and environmental viewpoint. This will only lead to higher rates now and expensive stranded assets in the future.
We urge the Public Service Commission to address the climate crisis now. We look to your leadership in New York State at this crucial point of history to make sound economic and environmental decisions by refusing to allow more gas infrastructure and speeding New York’s transition to renewable heating, cooling and cooking.