This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

June 26, 2002

New York State Energy Plan Increases Energy Efficiency, Boosts Renewable Energy, and Cuts Greenhouse Emissions

The New York State Energy Planning Board released its 2002 State Energy Plan on June 19th. The new plan includes goals to increase the state's use of renewable energy by 50 percent by 2020, drawing on renewable energy for 15 percent of the state's energy needs. It also calls for increased energy efficiency, but sets the goal in terms of energy intensity: reducing energy use per Gross State Product to 25 percent below 1990 levels by 2010. Those actions will contribute to a third state goal, cutting its greenhouse gas emissions to 5 percent below 1990 levels by 2010, and further cutting them to 10 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. According to the planning board, the energy plan is "designed to provide statewide policy guidance for energy-related decisions by government and private market participants within the State for the next four years." See the press release and the full State Energy Plan.

While achieving such goals may be questionable in most states, New York has at least one thing acting in its favor: its successful New York Energy Smart program, administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Agency (NYSERDA). In its first three years, the $78 million-a-year program has helped construct two wind facilities and has reduced annual carbon dioxide emissions by 670,000 tons.

Among the program's recent accomplishments are a rebate program that replaced 20,000 inefficient room air conditioners, the installation of energy efficiency improvements and a geothermal cooling system at a pharmaceutical laboratory, the installation of a geothermal heat pump system at Le Moyne College, the installation of an efficient cooling system at a mall, financing for an efficient vapor pressure swing adsorption system for an apple storage facility, and the provision of $24 million to support 56 combined heat and power systems in the state. See the recent NYSERDA press releases.

See also Governor Pataki's press release regarding the new funds for combined heat and power projects.