Gas stoves are still on, but New York State will slowly phase them out as well as other fossil-fuel appliances.
Similar to a law already in effect in the city, Albany included in this year’s budget a ban on gas hookups in new construction.
“First state to do it legislatively, the governor and the State Legislature deserve a lot of credit for it,” Richard Schrader, Northeast Policy Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said.
With some exceptions, new small buildings will be all electric starting in 2026 and new large ones will follow suit from 2029 on.
Gov. Hochul also wanted to cap carbon emissions and make those exceeding the limits to pay.
The final budget didn’t fully green-light her program, but did create a framework for it.
“She did get a certain amount of buy-in in terms of what a ‘cap and invest’ program will be used, how the proceeds will be used,” Raya Salter, from the New York State Climate Action Council, said.
The state is also asking the New York Power Authority, or NYPA, to shut down, in the next seven years, ‘peaker’ plants, which are highly polluting and used when electricity demand is high.
“So that puts NYPA on the path for being mostly renewable by 2030,” Salter said.
The state has the ambitious goal of a 100% clean energy sector by 2040. If private companies are unable to take the state to that target, NYPA can now step in and build renewable projects.
“It finally brings our state government into the responsibility of building renewable energy. And that’s something that motivated us over these last four years as we fought for the Build Public Renewables Act, because we knew that fossil fuel companies brought us the climate crisis, we could not rely on those same companies to take us out of it,” Queens Assemblyman Zohran Mamdani said.
Climate advocates also wanted to remove still-existing subsidies for the expansion of gas systems.
But they weren’t successful, and they blame it on the fossil-fuel industry lobbying efforts.
“People aren’t coming in to steal your gas stoves, which was again, another piece of pretty clever industry propaganda,” Schrader said.
Also included in the budget, $200 million to help some New Yorkers with high electric bills and another 200 million for low-income families finance energy-efficiency retrofits.