Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris celebrates Earth Day on April 22 by continuing his advocacy for stronger environmental laws to better protect and conserve our environment.
Senator Gianaris is a longtime leader in the effort to clean our environment. Recently, he introduced a series of legislative proposals to ensure better environmental policies in New York State.
“Earth Day serves as an important reminder of our responsibility to the planet,” Senator Gianaris said. “We cannot continue to take a reactive approach to environmental protection. My proposals would take proactive steps to safeguard our environment and prevent further damage.”
City Hall News hosted an energy panel to discuss New York State's energy future. Senator Gianaris was invited to participate in the panel since his Senate district is home to more than 60% of New York City's power generating plants.
Moving forward will require a range of new initiatives, panelists said – including conservation measures such as retrofitting buildings to be more efficient, and installing smart meters to let electric customers monitor and control their power use more closely.
“We have to balance all of these resources,” said Sergej Mahnovski, senior advisor and director of the Office of Energy Policy and Infrastructure at the city Department of Environmental Protection. “There is no magic bullet, so we have to be careful.”
The Daily News wrote about the Luyster Creek power plant project that is supposed to generate energy more efficiently. There is no reason why western Queens has to be responsible for most of the city's power production.
The Luyster Creek plan would swap out one old generator for two cleaner-burning ones, and lower emissions of two other generators that are about 50 years old, Perri said.
But regulatory permits could actually allow the company to produce more pollution overall in Astoria.
For example, the plant would be allowed to increase its overall carbon monoxide output by almost 89 tons a year, Perri said. Nitrogen oxide could go up by almost 25 tons annually.
Queens Times Ledger wrote about the Luyster Creek Energy Project planned by USPowergen. Senator Gianaris cannot support power generation unless we are guaranteed an overall emissions reduction.
State Sen. Michael Gianaris (D-Astoria) withdrew his support for a new green power plant project after learning that despite an upgrade meant to reduce emissions, the company will be allowed to create pollutants at a higher rate than it had been allowed previously.
“My issue has always been that I will not support new power generation unless we’re guaranteed an overall emissions reduction,” Gianaris said.
Western Queens already produces the majority of New York City's power. We should not have to live in a community whose air is becoming increasingly polluted.
From Queens Chronicle:
U.S. Power Generating Co. plans to expand its Astoria station by building a new 500-MW unit some 2,400 feet away from its existing site in northwest Queens. The plan, called the Luyster Creek Energy Project, has raised fears that total emissions from the station could rise.
The project involves retiring one of four old units at the station in addition to building the new one, and is undergoing a formal community review period until Dec. 9, as required by the Department of Environmental Conservation, according to John Reese, senior vice president of U.S. Power Generating.
The Queens Gazette wrote on the October Community Board 1 meeting, where questions were raised on how the state deficit will be handled this year. Senator Gianaris, as the keynote speaker, spoke about a range of topics including ways in which we can boost our economy and maintain community members' rights to services they need.
New York state faces a projected budget deficit of $2.4 billion next year and after closing a gap of $10 billion, largely through cuts to health care and education, the question raised at the October meeting of Community Board 1 was how the state will handle the deficit this year.
The Queens Chronicle wrote about volunteers coming together to plant 100 trees at Queensbridge Park as part of the 5th annual "One Thing That's Green" event.
On Saturday morning (Earth Day) nearly 500 volunteers gathered at Queensbridge Park in Long Island City to plant 100 trees. Volunteers were of all ages dressed in jeans or workout clothes. There were piles of shovels, gardening gloves and wheelbarrows set up at each of the color-coded stations.
JetBlue Airways teamed with New York Restoration Project, the nonprofit that has partnered with the city to plant a million trees throughout the city by 2017, to put on the fifth annual One Thing That’s Green event.
The Queens Gazette wrote an article about the Global Kids Annual Youth Conference at Bryant High School, where Senator Gianaris met with students to talk about energy, climate change, and environmental policy.
A group of Global Kids Leaders at William Cullen Bryant H.S. in LIC met with state Senator Michael Gianaris on April 23, for a forum to celebrate Earth Day and explore how young people can improve environmental conditions in Queens.
Gianaris imparted strategies to the student leaders on influencing public policy to improve air quality and energy efficiency in Western Queens.