Hawkins, Dunlea: Repeal Cuomo's Solar VDER Rule

Hawkins, Dunlea: Repeal Cuomo's Solar VDER Rule

For immediate release: August 28, 2018

Hawkins and Dunlea Support Efforts to Halt Cuomo’s Anti-Solar Rule Change

The Green Party candidates for Governor and Comptroller today called upon Governor Cuomo and the Public Service Commission (PSC) to halt Cuomo’s anti-solar rules adopted a year ago.

Community groups and solar developers are holding news conferences across the state today to urge Cuomo to restore net metering for community solar projects. A year ago, the PSC replaced net metering with a complex system called Value of Distributed Energy Resources (VDER). The NY Energy Democracy Alliance says that since the change, more than $800 million worth of investment in community solar has been threatened or canceled.

Mark Dunlea, the Green candidate for State Comptroller, said that state should also follow the lead of California which recently required all new building by 2020 to include solar power in their design.

“Cuomo keeps on putting out news releases claiming he has increased solar in the state by 1000% even though only 1% of the state’s electricity is coming from solar. The VDER rule adopted by the PSC last year brought the community solar farm efforts to a standstill. We need a Governor who will stop doing the bidding of the corporate-owned utilities and instead speed up the transition to solar, wind, and geothermal in New York,” said Hawkins, the Green Party nominee for Governor.

The Greens support the NY Off Fossil Fuels (NY OFF) bill (A5105A/S5908A) that commits the state to 100% clean energy by 2030, with one of its benchmarks requiring net zero carbon emissions for all new construction by 2020.

Hawkins earlier this year urged the state legislature to pass the VDER Moratorium bill (A.10474/S.8273), which would amend the public service law to restore net energy metering for community solar. It places a three-year moratorium on PSC’s complicated and unworkable solar compensation policy.  It requires the PSC and the Long Island Power Authority to create a methodology to compensate customers for the full and accurate value of their energy generation by 2021, including “valuing equity and justice.”

California recently became the first state to require all new homes to have solar power. The extra cost to home buyers will be more than made up in lower energy bills, which has won over the construction industry.

“When it comes to renewable energy, New York has been long on rhetoric and short on deliverables. We only get 4% of our electricity from wind and solar. Climate change and extreme weather are accelerating and we need to respond with an emergency mobilization similar do what we did in WWII. Yes to renewables, No to any more fossil fuels. A simple, cost-effective step is to require new buildings to not only have net zero carbon emissions but actually to add clean energy to our power system,” noted Mark Dunlea, who coordinates the campaign to move New York to 100% clean renewable energy by 2030.

Dunlea says that as Comptroller he will divest the state pension funds from fossil fuels.

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