Elected officials and climate advocates are pushing for an aggressive plan to address global warming and reduce pollution. New Lebanon Supervisor Tistrya Houghtling says her community is especially vulnerable to extreme weather.
A school bus garage is vulnerable to flooding and farmers are hurt by fluctuations in weather and temperature.
"Between the drought and the flooding, and kind of what I call our bipolar weather where it goes back and forth so quickly, a lot of our farmers are struggling with their crops and other things," she said.
But at the same time, she does not want the changes to hit the wallets of her neighbors, especially lower income people who may struggle to pay to upgrade their homes with an electric car charging or a new heat pump.
"If we're going to force installation of some of these energy upgrades without giving them the financial means to do it, that's just going to create an awful situation and it's going to change peoples' minds against what we all need to be on the same boat with, which is saving our environment," she said.
In the coming years, New York plans to phase out gas-powered cars for electric vehicles. Buildings and homes will be electrified. The transition will mean a major change for how homes and businesses are powered, requiring major infrastructure upgrades along the way.
Advocates gathered outside of the governor's office on Thursday to push for the strongest possible standards and regulations to do so.
There are grants, incentives and tax credits to help individual people with the transition, and still more are being proposed.
The change will require macro transitions for energy sources and more close-to-home alterations in order to reduce the effects of climate change.
Republicans, including Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt, are skeptical utility ratepayers won't take the brunt of the costs.
"What is the cost of these policies? Can we do these things?" Ortt said at a news conference recently.
New Yorkers have already been contending with high gas prices and an expected increase in home heating bills this winter.
"It's not going to be at the pump so much that it's going to be in their mailbox," he said. "It's going to be their utility bills. And it's going to be the cost to heat their homes."
But New Paltz Mayor Tim Rogers says the cost of inaction on climate is far greater.
"If we don't make these investments," he said, "if we don't make these conversions we will be paying many trillions more in costs for our communities."