National Clean Energy Week Ignites Passion for the Planet

National Clean Energy Week Ignites Passion for the Planet

By Kathleen Gasperini

National Clean Energy Week (#CleanEnergyWeek) is taking off as more organizations, brands, and fans are celebrating and embracing the movement to support clean energy solutions that address America’s economic, national security and environmental needs. With its second annual nationally recognized high-profile programming, running from Sept. 24-Sept. 28, National Clean Energy Week provides a time to put clean energy center stage. ACE NY is a proud partner organization of National Clean Energy Week, supporting the movement all week and beyond, including our participation at Climate Week NYC, with a panel discussion on New York and renewable energy. Working alongside other climate leaders from across the world, we’re coming together to present solutions and engage with others on climate change solutions.

In the larger scope, many business and political leaders have disagreed with the Administration’s decision to pull out of the COP21 Paris Climate Accord and have implemented their own goals, arguing that it abdicated American leadership on climate and threatened the country’s competitiveness in a low-carbon economy.

To date, 16 Governor’s, including New York’s Gov. Cuomo, joined forces forming the U.S. Climate Alliance. New York quickly took to a leadership position in the Alliance with Cuomo's progressive 2018 Clean Energy Jobs and Climate Agenda.

City mayors from across the country have come together forming the U.S. Climate Mayors group to meet new clean energy goals. More than 2,642 mayors, including NYC’s Mayor de Blasio, CEOs, college presidents, faith organizations, tribal leaders, responded by forming the “We Are Still In” movement that pledges ongoing commitment to the Paris Accord goals. A related group, America’s Pledge, is tracking these commitments and attempting to measure their impact. So far, according to its initial accounting, these sub-national pledgees account for 2.7Gt in emissions. For comparison, U.S. emissions totaled an estimated 6.4Gt estimated in 2017.

Specifically, in New York., Gov. Cuomo’s “Reforming the Energy Vision” (REV) strategy is spurring clean energy innovation and bringing new investments into the State. Regulatory changes under the REV initiative are promoting more efficient use of energy, deeper penetration of renewable energy resources such as wind and solar, wider deployment of “distributed” energy resources, such as micro grids, roof-top solar and other on-site power supplies, and storage.

Under REV, the state’s energy goals include:

  • 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2030, with a long-term goal of decreasing total carbon emissions 80% by 2050
  • 50% renewable energy by 2030
  • 23% decrease in energy consumption in buildings from 2012 levels by 2030

As a leader in the US regarding clean energy and combating climate change, New York’s Clean Energy Standard (CES) is the most comprehensive and ambitious clean energy goal in the State's history. The CES is designed to fight climate change, reduce harmful air pollution, and ensure a diverse and reliable low carbon energy supply. To help achieve these goals, the CES requires that 50 percent of New York's electricity come from renewable energy sources such as solar and wind by 2030, with a progressive phase-in schedule that started in 2017.

While the celebration for clean energy is only a week, the movement will clearly continue throughout the year. Resources, events, and social media movements can to be found at https://nationalcleanenergyweek.org, but continue to build throughout local communities across the nation. Share your pictures and join the movement at #CleanEnergyWeek and #NCEW18.

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