New York’s business, environmental, labor and community stakeholders recently rallied in support of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plan to make offshore wind a key component of the state’s strategy to increase renewable energy and spur economic development for New Yorkers.
The coalition came together in advance of a series of New York City public meetings on offshore wind. Hosted by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, the meetings will urge New York’s leaders to smartly and aggressively move forward on offshore wind.
The latest news conference built on the momentum from last month’s public meetings on Long Island, where a similar coalition of Long Island business, labor, environmental and political stakeholders organized to demonstrate their support for offshore wind power.
Monday evening’s conference took place at Queens Public Library in Rockaway Beach. Participants included Hakim Evans, Rockaway resident and Alliance for Climate Education (ACE) fellow; Jim Slevin, Local 1-2 president of Utility Workers Union of America AFL-CIO; Shay O’Reilly, New York City organizer for the Sierra Club; Joe Martens, director of the New York Offshore Wind Alliance (NYOWA); Catherine Bowes, senior manager of climate and energy for the National Wildlife Federation; Ross Gould, energy sector program manager for the Workforce Development Institute; Kim Fraczek, director of the Sane Energy Project; and John Cush, Local 361, Ironworkers.
“New York has a unique opportunity to become a national leader in offshore wind if it acts in a comprehensive and timely way,” says NYOWA’s Martens. “The Offshore Master Plan holds the key to creating a new clean energy economy that means emission-free offshore wind, new job-creating industries and economic opportunity, while reducing reliance on polluting fossil fuels and improving public health.”
ACE’s Evans adds, “In order for us to make a progressive step forward in our energy usage, we need to ensure that renewables are our energy source of choice. It is imperative the state follows through with the Offshore Wind Master Plan in an effort to commit to the clean energy standard. To ensure these plans are achieved, groups and individuals from marginalized areas, especially youth, should voice their opinions and continue to advocate for their communities and the environment.”