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Enviros Descend on Albany

Enviros Descend on Albany

POLITICO New York Energy, April 24, 2018

— Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins, who also attended the rally, says the Green Party wants to get off fossil fuels 20 years earlier than Nixon does, by 2030. "That's what the science says we need to avert catastrophic climate change," Hawkins told public radio's Karen Dewitt. "That's what we need to do in industrial states like New York." Read more here.

— Some activists were arrested in a planned civil disobedience action and Hawkins was among those arrested.

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ENVIROS DESCEND ON ALBANY — POLITICO's Marie J. French: Environmental activists marched to the state Capitol on Monday to push Gov. Andrew Cuomo to block all new natural gas infrastructure and set a more-ambitious goal to transition the state's economy off fossil fuels. About a thousand demonstrators walked from the site of a proposed natural gas plant in Albany's Sheridan Hollow neighborhood to the Capitol. The event attracted Cuomo's Democratic primary challenger, Cynthia Nixon; Karenna Gore, daughter of former Vice President Al Gore; and community groups from across the state. During a rally at the Capitol, some demonstrators attacked Cuomo personally. "You're being a coward," Geovaira Hernandez, an organizer with PUSH Buffalo, said of Cuomo. "It is time you become a leader ... You say you want to be president but you can't even take care of the people in your own state." (Cuomo is thought to be considering a presidential campaign in 2020 but has never said he wants to be president.) The organizers said the main goals of the event were to persuade Cuomo to block all new natural gas infrastructure in the state, including pipelines and power plants; move toward 100 percent renewable energy, and tax emissions to fund the transition. Local groups also protested individual natural gas projects in their communities. Cuomo has set a goal to reach 50 percent renewable electricity by 2030 and reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40 percent by that year and 80 percent by 2050. Activists have said that's not enough and are pushing to move the state off fossil fuels entirely — including to heat homes, power cars and fuel electric generation.

... A spokesperson for Cuomo's campaign said on Friday the governor has placed a moratorium on new pipelines but clarified Monday that he's not approved any new pipelines. His administration has blocked some large new pipelines by denying water permits but approved smaller projects that mainly lie in existing rights of way or upgrade the capacity of existing systems. Read more here.

— "We can be in a growth industry," Nixon told reporters. "At a time when Donald Trump has pulled out of the Paris accords, we can lead not only for our own state, but we can show the nation how to lead in renewable energy."

— Green Party gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins, who also attended the rally, says the Green Party wants to get off fossil fuels 20 years earlier than Nixon does, by 2030. "That's what the science says we need to avert catastrophic climate change," Hawkins told public radio's Karen Dewitt. "That's what we need to do in industrial states like New York." Read more here.

— Some activists were arrested in a planned civil disobedience action and Hawkins was among those arrested.

— The HuffPost's Alexander Kaufman says Cuomo is a "climate pariah" and that he's already twice failed the test of supporting NY Renews-backed Climate and Community Protection Act. A spokesperson for the campaign told POLITICO Monday that Cuomo is supportive of some elements of the measure, but the governor has never included the measure in his budget or supported it publicly.

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