senate Bill S6499B

Relates to carbon dioxide allowances for biomass-fired electric generating facilities under the carbon dioxide budget trading program

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 30 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO ENERGY AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS
  • 27 / Feb / 2014
    • 1ST REPORT CAL.187
  • 03 / Mar / 2014
    • 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • 04 / Mar / 2014
    • ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • 28 / Apr / 2014
    • AMENDED ON THIRD READING (T) 6499A
  • 09 / Jun / 2014
    • AMENDED ON THIRD READING 6499B
  • 20 / Jun / 2014
    • COMMITTED TO RULES

Summary

Establishes that electric generating facilities that use biomass for more than 50% of its annual heat input shall not be required to obtain carbon dioxide allowances for carbon dioxide emissions attributable to the burning of biomass under the carbon dioxide budget trading program.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A8888B
Versions:
S6499
S6499A
S6499B
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Current Committee:
Senate Rules
Law Section:
Public Service Law
Laws Affected:
Add §73, Pub Serv L; amd §1854, Pub Auth L; amd §19-0312, En Con L

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S6499B

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public service law, the public
authorities law, and the environmental conservation law, in relation to
biomass-fired electric generating facilities subject to the regional
greenhouse gas initiative and the CO2 budget trading program

PURPOSE:

To provide certain electric generators that convert from coal fired
generation to biomass fired generation an exemption from participation
in the State's CO2 trading and auction programs. Under the exemption,
such electric generators shall not be required to obtain CO2 allowances
for CO2 emissions that are attributable to the burning of biomass.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section 1- Sets forth the legislative intent and lays out the benefits
to the environment and the economy associated with biomass electric
generation.

Section 2- Amends the public Service law to add a new section 73 that
requires The Public Service Commission (PSC). The Department of Environ-
mental Conservation (The Department) and NYSERDA to cooperate in the
implementation of the provisions of this bill.

Section 3- Makes similar conforming changes in relation to coordination
between NYSERDA, DEC and the PSC, this time to the Public Authorities
Law.

Section 4- Waives the requirement for an electric generating facility
that uses biomass for more than 50% of its heat input to obtain CO2
allowances under the RGGI program, provided that such generator previ-
ously combusted coal as its primary fuel and that it is no longer
authorized to combust coal.

Section 5-Sets forth the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION:

Biomass facilities are an economic development engine across New York
State that support more than 4,000 direct and indirect jobs. Collection
of biomass fuel as well as transportation and generation all combine to
make biomass facilities important to local economies. In addition,
Biomass is a sustainable fuel, since the carbon that may be emitted by a
facility is consistent with the natural life cycle of such material that
may naturally degrade. Currently, new biomass plants are not required to
participate in the RGGI program and to purchase carbon off sets, but
plants that are converted from coal to biomass are. Since it is in the
environmental interest of the residents of the state for New York to
encourage cleaner burning fuels, and because coal fired plants could
convert to biomass facilities and still maintain jobs and support local

taxing jurisdictions, it is important that such conversions also be
exempted from the costs associated with purchasing carbon off-sets.
Under this exemption, certain electric generators shall not be required
to obtain CO2 allowances for CO2 emissions that are attributable to the
burning of biomass. This bill accomplishes that goal in statue thereby
providing certainty to generators who may be considering such conver-
sions.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:

None.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:

New Bill

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have
become a law and shall apply to all control periods commencing on or
after January 1, 2012; provided however, that effective immediately the
department of environmental conservation is authorized and directed to
amend, revise and/or repeal any rule, regulation or policy necessary for
the implementation of this act on or before such effective date.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                 6499--B
    Cal. No. 187

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 30, 2014
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens. MAZIARZ, RITCHIE, GRIFFO -- read twice and ordered
  printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee  on  Energy
  and  Telecommunications  --  reported  favorably  from said committee,
  ordered to first and  second  report,  ordered  to  a  third  reading,
  amended  and  ordered  reprinted,  retaining its place in the order of
  third reading -- again amended and ordered  reprinted,  retaining  its
  place in the order of third reading

AN  ACT to amend the public service law, the public authorities law, and
  the environmental conservation law, in relation to biomass-fired elec-
  tric generating facilities subject  to  the  regional  greenhouse  gas
  initiative and the CO2 budget trading program

  THE  PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1.  Legislative  intent.  The  legislature  hereby  finds  and
declares  that  it is in the economic and environmental interests of the
citizens of the state of New York to  support  and  encourage  renewable
energy generation through the conversion of coal-fired electric generat-
ing  facilities  to  biomass-fired facilities. The combustion of biomass
offers a sustainable and manageable carbon lifecycle since the materials
included in biomass generally absorb  atmospheric  carbon  during  their
lifecycle  and then return it to the atmosphere during combustion.  This
process mimics the natural lifecycle of plant life that can fall to  the
forest floor, decompose and return its carbon to the atmosphere.
  The  legislature  further  finds  and declares that biomass production
facilities support and sustain jobs, particularly in upstate  New  York,
where more than four thousand people are employed directly or indirectly
by  the industry. In fact, many of the largest and most successful biom-
ass facilities are located in parts of New York  state  that  have  high
unemployment and are in desperate need of economic development. New York
state  also  possesses  an  abundance  of  biomass fuel due to the large
amount of untapped forest and agricultural land where biomass  fuel  can
be collected. Biomass is the equivalent of solar energy stored in organ-
ic matter and is environmentally friendly while costing around one third
of the cost of fossil fuels.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD13745-04-4

S. 6499--B                          2

  As  such,  to the extent that operators of electric generating facili-
ties in New York state are willing to convert formerly coal-fired facil-
ities (boilers, combustion  turbines,  or  combined  cycle  systems)  to
instead  be fueled by biomass, state policy should encourage and support
such  conversions  rather  than discourage them. While new biomass-fired
electric generating facilities are not required to  acquire  CO2  allow-
ances  under  the  regulations  implementing the Regional Greenhouse Gas
Initiative (RGGI) in New York state, former coal-fired  facilities  that
convert  to  combusting biomass are still subject to RGGI's requirements
under existing regulations, which effectively discourages  such  conver-
sions.  To remedy this situation, and consistent with the intent of RGGI
to encourage more renewable energy generation, the legislature  declares
that  formerly coal-fired electric generating facilities that convert to
primarily biomass-fired facilities shall be treated in the  same  manner
as a new biomass facility under the RGGI regulations.
  S  2.  The public service law is amended by adding a new section 73 to
read as follows:
  S 73. COOPERATION WITH THE NEW YORK STATE ENERGY RESEARCH AND DEVELOP-
MENT AUTHORITY AND THE DEPARTMENT  OF  ENVIRONMENTAL  CONSERVATION.  THE
DEPARTMENT  SHALL  COOPERATE WITH THE NEW YORK STATE ENERGY RESEARCH AND
DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY AND THE DEPARTMENT OF  ENVIRONMENTAL  CONSERVATION
IN  THE  IMPLEMENTATION  OF  SUBDIVISION  FOUR OF SECTION 19-0312 OF THE
ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION LAW RELATING TO ELECTRIC  GENERATING  FACILI-
TIES  THAT  ARE  SUBJECT TO THE CO2 BUDGET TRADING PROGRAM (6 NYCRR PART
242) ESTABLISHED BY THE  DEPARTMENT  OF  ENVIRONMENTAL  CONSERVATION  IN
CONNECTION WITH THE REGIONAL GREENHOUSE GAS INITIATIVE.
  S 3. Section 1854 of the public authorities law is amended by adding a
new subdivision 22 to read as follows:
  22.  COOPERATION WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION AND
THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SERVICE. THE AUTHORITY SHALL COOPERATE WITH THE
DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION AND THE  DEPARTMENT  OF  PUBLIC
SERVICE  IN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF SUBDIVISION FOUR OF SECTION 19-0312 OF
THE ENVIRONMENTAL  CONSERVATION  LAW  RELATING  TO  ELECTRIC  GENERATING
FACILITIES  THAT  ARE SUBJECT TO THE CO2 BUDGET TRADING PROGRAM (6 NYCRR
PART 242) ESTABLISHED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONSERVATION IN
CONNECTION WITH THE REGIONAL GREENHOUSE GAS INITIATIVE.
  S 4. Section 19-0312 of the environmental conservation law is  amended
by adding a new subdivision 4 to read as follows:
  4.  NOTWITHSTANDING ANY LAW, RULE, REGULATION OR POLICY TO THE CONTRA-
RY, AN ELECTRIC GENERATING FACILITY  INCLUDING  ANY  BOILER,  COMBUSTION
TURBINE  OR  COMBINATION  CYCLE  SYSTEM,  THAT  A.  WAS  FORMERLY FOSSIL
FUEL-FIRED DUE TO THE USE OF COAL AS ITS PRIMARY FUEL,
  B. IS NO LONGER AUTHORIZED TO COMBUST  COAL  UNDER  ITS  AIR  TITLE  V
FACILITY  PERMIT  ISSUED  BY  THE DEPARTMENT PURSUANT TO 6 NYCRR SUBPART
201-6,
  C. USES ELIGIBLE BIOMASS FOR MORE THAN FIFTY  PERCENT  OF  ITS  ANNUAL
HEAT INPUT, AND
  D.  USES  FOSSIL  FUEL  FOR  LESS THAN FIVE PERCENT OF ITS ANNUAL HEAT
INPUT, SHALL NOT BE DEFINED AS FOSSIL FUEL-FIRED UNDER  THE  CO2  BUDGET
TRADING  PROGRAM  (6 NYCRR PART 242).  FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SUBDIVI-
SION:
  "BOILER", "COMBUSTION TURBINE",  "COMBINED  CYCLE  SYSTEM",  "ELIGIBLE
BIOMASS"  AND  "FOSSIL FUEL" SHALL HAVE THE SAME MEANINGS AS ASCRIBED TO
SUCH TERMS IN 6 NYCRR S 242-1.2.
  S 5. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day  after  it  shall
have  become  a law and shall apply to all control periods commencing on

S. 6499--B                          3

or after January 1, 2012; provided however, that  effective  immediately
the  department of environmental conservation is authorized and directed
to amend, revise and/or repeal any rule, regulation or policy  necessary
for the implementation of this act on or before such effective date.

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