1. The Laws of New York
  2. Consolidated Laws
  3. Environmental Conservation
  4. Article 75: Climate Change


Section 75-0103 New York state climate action council

Environmental Conservation (ENV)

  1. There is hereby established the New York state climate action council ("council") which shall consist of the following twenty-two members:

  a. the commissioners of transportation, health, economic development, agriculture and markets, housing and community renewal, environmental conservation, labor, the chairperson of the public service commission, the presidents of the New York state energy research and development authority; New York power authority; Long Island power authority; the secretary of state, or their designees.

  b. two non-agency expert members appointed by the governor;

  c. three members to be appointed by the temporary president of the senate;

  d. three members to be appointed by the speaker of the assembly;

  e. one member to be appointed by the minority leader of the senate; and

  f. one member to be appointed by the minority leader of the assembly.

  2. The at large members shall include at all times individuals with expertise in issues relating to climate change mitigation and/or adaptation, such as environmental justice, labor, public health and regulated industries.

  3. Council members shall receive no compensation for their services but shall be reimbursed for actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.

  4. The co-chairpersons of the council shall be the commissioner of environmental conservation and the president of the New York state energy research and development authority or their designee.

  5. Each member of the council shall be entitled to one vote. The council's approval and adoption of the final scoping plan pursuant to this section, and any subsequent interim updates thereto, shall require a supermajority of the council. No action may be taken by the council unless there is a quorum, which shall at all times be a majority of the members of the council.

  6. Any vacancies on the council shall be filled in the manner provided for the initial appointment.

  7. The council shall convene advisory panels requiring special expertise and, at a minimum, shall establish advisory panels on transportation, energy intensive and trade-exposed industries, land-use and local government, energy efficiency and housing, power generation, and agriculture and forestry. The purpose of the advisory panels shall be to provide recommendations to the council on specific topics, in its preparation of the scoping plan, and interim updates to the scoping plan, and in fulfilling the council's ongoing duties.

  a. Each advisory panel shall be chaired by the relevant agency head or his or her designee. The council may convene and dissolve additional advisory panels, in its sole discretion, and pursuant to the requirements herein.

  b. Advisory panels shall be comprised of no more than five voting members. The council shall elect advisory panel members, and such membership shall at all times represent individuals with direct involvement or expertise in matters to be addressed by the advisory panels pursuant to this section.

  c. Advisory panels shall work directly with the council on the preparation of the scoping plan pursuant to this section. Each advisory panel shall coordinate with the environmental justice advisory group and climate justice working group.

  d. All agencies of the state or subdivisions thereof may, at the request of any such advisory panel or the council, provide the advisory panel with such facilities, assistance, and data as will enable advisory panels to carry out their powers and duties.

  8. The council shall convene a just transition working group. The working group shall be chaired by the commissioner of labor and the president of the New York state energy research and development authority and shall consist of no less than thirteen, but no more than seventeen members and shall include the commissioners of housing and community renewal, the chair of the department of public service, representatives of environmental justice communities and representatives of labor organizations, clean energy developers and at least five representatives of distinct energy-intensive industries. The just transition working group shall:

  a. advise the council on issues and opportunities for workforce development and training related to energy efficiency measures, renewable energy and other clean energy technologies, with specific focus on training and workforce opportunities for disadvantaged communities, and segments of the population that may be underrepresented in the clean energy workforce such as veterans, women and formerly incarcerated persons;

  b. identify energy-intensive industries and related trades and identify sector specific impacts of the state's current workforce and avenues to maximize the skills and expertise of New York state workers in the new energy economy;

  c. identify sites of electric generating facilities that may be closed as a result of a transition to a clean energy sector and the issues and opportunities presented by reuse of those sites;

  d. with respect to potential for greenhouse gas emission limits developed by the department of environmental conservation pursuant to this article, advise the council on the potential impacts of carbon leakage risk on New York state industries and local host communities, including the impact of any potential carbon reduction measures on the competitiveness of New York state business and industry;

  e. advise the council and conduct stakeholder outreach on any other workforce matters directed by the council; and

  f. at a time frame determined by the council, prepare and publish recommendations to the council on how to address: issues and opportunities related to the energy-intensive and trade-exposed entities; workforce development for trade-exposed entities, disadvantaged communities and underrepresented segments of the population; measures to minimize the carbon leakage risk and minimize anti-competitiveness impacts of any potential carbon policies and energy sector mandates.

  g. The just transition working group is hereby authorized and directed to conduct a study of and report on:

  i. The number of jobs created to counter climate change, which shall include but not be limited to the energy sector, building sector, transportation sector, and working lands sector;

  ii. The projection of the inventory of jobs needed and the skills and training required to meet the demand of jobs to counter climate change; and

  iii. Workforce disruption due to community transitions from a low carbon economy.

  9. The department and the New York state energy research and development authority shall provide the council with such facilities, assistance and data as will enable the council to carry out its powers and duties. Additionally, all other agencies of the state or subdivisions thereof may, at the request of the co-chairpersons, provide the council with such facilities, assistance, and data as will enable the council to carry out its powers and duties.

  10. The council shall consult with the climate justice working group established in section 75-0111 of this article, the department of state utility intervention unit, and the federally designated electric bulk system operator.

  11. The council shall on or before two years of the effective date of this article, prepare and approve a scoping plan outlining the recommendations for attaining the statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits in accordance with the schedule established in section 75-0107 of this article, and for the reduction of emissions beyond eighty-five percent, net zero emissions in all sectors of the economy, which shall inform the state energy planning board's adoption of a state energy plan in accordance with section 6-104 of the energy law. The first state energy plan issued subsequent to completion of the scoping plan required by this section shall incorporate the recommendations of the council.

  12. The draft scoping plan shall be developed in consultation with the environmental justice advisory group, and the climate justice working group established pursuant to section 75-0111 of this article and other stakeholders.

  a. The council shall hold at least six regional public comment hearings on the draft scoping plan, including three meetings in the upstate region and three meetings in the downstate region, and shall allow at least one hundred twenty days for the submission of public comment.

  b. The council shall provide meaningful opportunities for public comment from all segments of the population that will be impacted by the plan, including persons living in disadvantaged communities as identified pursuant to section 75-0111 of this article.

  c. On or before three years of the effective date of this article, the council shall submit the final scoping plan to the governor, the speaker of the assembly and the temporary president of the senate and post such plan on its website.

  13. The scoping plan shall identify and make recommendations on regulatory measures and other state actions that will ensure the attainment of the statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits established pursuant to section 75-0107 of this article. The measures and actions considered in such scoping plan shall at a minimum include:

  a. Performance-based standards for sources of greenhouse gas emissions, including but not limited to sources in the transportation, building, industrial, commercial, and agricultural sectors.

  b. Measures to reduce emissions from the electricity sector by displacing fossil-fuel fired electricity with renewable electricity or energy efficiency.

  c. Land-use and transportation planning measures aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles.

  d. Measures to achieve long-term carbon sequestration and/or promote best management practices in land use, agriculture and forestry.

  e. Measures to achieve six gigawatts of distributed solar energy capacity installed in the state by two thousand twenty-five, nine gigawatts of offshore wind capacity installed by two thousand thirty-five, a statewide energy efficiency goal of one hundred eighty-five trillion British thermal units energy reduction from the two thousand twenty-five forecast; and three gigawatts of statewide energy storage capacity by two thousand thirty.

  f. Measures to promote the beneficial electrification of personal and freight transport and other strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector.

  g. Measures to achieve reductions in energy use in existing residential or commercial buildings, including the beneficial electrification of water and space heating in buildings, establishing appliance efficiency standards, strengthening building energy codes, requiring annual building energy benchmarking, disclosing energy efficiency in home sales, and expanding the ability of state facilities to utilize performance contracting.

  h. Recommendations to aid in the transition of the state workforce and the rapidly emerging clean energy industry.

  i. Measures to achieve healthy forests that support clean air and water, biodiversity, and sequester carbon.

  j. Measures to limit the use of chemicals, substances or products that contribute to global climate change when released to the atmosphere, but are not intended for end-use combustion.

  k. Mechanisms to limit emission leakage as defined in subdivision eleven of section 75-0101 of this article.

  l. Verifiable, enforceable and voluntary emissions reduction measures.

  14. In developing such plan the council shall:

  a. Consider all relevant information pertaining to greenhouse gas emissions reduction programs in states in the United States Climate Alliance, as well as other states, regions, localities, and nations.

  b. Evaluate, using the best available economic models, emission estimation techniques and other scientific methods, the total potential costs and potential economic and non-economic benefits of the plan for reducing greenhouse gases, and make such evaluation publicly available. In conducting this evaluation, the council shall quantify:

  i. The economic and social benefits of greenhouse gas emissions reductions, taking into account the value of carbon, established by the department pursuant to section 75-0113 of this article, any other tools that the council deems useful and pertinent for this analysis, and any environmental, economic and public health co-benefits (such as the reduction of co-pollutants and the diversification of energy sources); and

  ii. The costs of implementing proposed emissions reduction measures, and the emissions reductions that the council anticipates achieving through these measures.

  c. Take into account the relative contribution of each source or source category to statewide greenhouse gas emissions, and the potential for adverse effects on small businesses, and recommend a de minimis threshold of greenhouse gas emissions below which emission reduction requirements will not apply.

  d. Identify measures to maximize reductions of both greenhouse gas emissions and co-pollutants in disadvantaged communities as identified pursuant to section 75-0111 of this article.

  15. The council shall update its plan for achieving the statewide greenhouse gas emissions limits at least once every five years and shall make such updates available to the governor, the speaker of the assembly and the temporary president of the senate and post such updates on its website.

  16. The council shall identify existing climate change mitigation and adaptation efforts at the federal, state, and local levels and may make recommendations regarding how such policies may improve the state's efforts.

  17. The council shall maintain a website that includes public access to the scoping plan and greenhouse gas limit information.