ALBANY – Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris announced on April 7 that the state budget agreement preserved New York City’s Local Law 97 – the centerpiece of the Climate Mobilization Act – which mandates ambitious carbon reduction targets for large buildings.
“Local Law 97 was years in the making, the result of painstaking work and thorough analysis by many people, and to swoop in and try to override it through the state process was a huge mistake,” said Senate Deputy Leader Michael Gianaris. “I am proud we stood up and defeated efforts by big real estate interests to circumvent this important new law.”
Local Law 97 – known as the Climate Mobilization Act – required all buildings larger than 25,000 square feet to meet ambitious carbon reduction targets.
“We cannot solve the climate crisis without investment in efficiency, renewables, AND good jobs for communities most at risk. Local Law 97 is one of the largest emissions reductions policies enacted by any city in the world because it supports all of these things, a balance that the Governor’s Part R proposal would have severely hindered. I want to thank Senator Gianaris and all our allies in the legislature who fought to keep Part R out of the final budget and protect the centerpiece of the Climate Mobilization Act,” said New York City Council Member Costa Constantinides, Author of the Climate Mobilization Act.
“NYC enacted the best climate and jobs law in the country by requiring large, dirty buildings to slash their pollution. It’s on track to create tens of thousands of jobs in design, renovation and construction. Turning back the real estate lobby’s attack on a Green New Deal is a huge victory. Senator Gianaris and the legislature delivered for the people not the lobbyists.” said Pete Sikora, of New York Communities and a member of the Local Law 97 Advisory Board.
“Today is a victory for the communities of New York City that came together to pass Local Law 97 and have been fighting hard to preserve it. We defeated Cuomo’s misguided budget proposal that would have undermined Local Law 97 and New York City’s urgent efforts to address the climate crisis. Let's be clear: Cuomo’s proposal was bad for our environment, bad for our communities, and bad for our economy. Now building owners must step up and perform the necessary retrofits to meet emissions reduction standards. These retrofits will create thousands of green jobs in low-income communities of color exposed to the biggest climate threats of the future. We thank Senator Gianaris and the legislature for their leadership on this,” said Maritza Silva-Farrell, Executive Director of ALIGN.
“New York City’s Green New Deal for Dirty Buildings, Local Law 97, is saved! Sunrise NYC thanks Senate Deputy Majority Leader Mike Gianaris for organizing the Caucus against Governor Cuomo’s REBNY loophole. NYC’s Local Law 97, authored by Councilman Costa Constantinides, is the central plank of the most significant climate overhaul passed in any city the world over. Buildings contribute the majority of NYC’s carbon emissions that drive climate crisis globally and air pollution that robs years from our lives, particularly in communities of color, locally. Our work is far from finished. We need a Green New Deal that combats climate crisis by creating good jobs, slashing emissions, and lifting up fence-line communities. But taking its cue from oil and fracked gas companies, REBNY will continue its lobbying spree against climate justice and responsibility. By protecting Local Law 97 from Cuomo and his billionaire-developer friends, leaders in Albany show they have the courage to beat powerful interests happy to profit off of death and destruction. Sunrise NYC and the Movement for a Green New Deal urge them to keep flexing. Climate crisis does not care if it’s budget time or if a governor is vulnerable. We need enduring action. In partners like the Deputy Majority Leader, the movement has champions ready to deliver,” said Harry Manin, Sunrise NYC.
“As we go into the Green New Deal Era, it is essential that we favor the most vulnerable over corporate lobbyists. Turning back loopholes that favor polluters at the expense of everyday New Yorkers is a major win. New York is installing one of the most ambitious climate laws in the country, creating thousands of green jobs in renovation and construction. Senator Gianaris, the legislature and activists are fighting for the people and the future,” said Saad Amer, climate activist and Co-Founder, Plus1Vote.