Senator Serrano and the Senate Majority Advance Legislation to Reduce Hazardous Chemicals and Protect New York’s Environment

June 08, 2021

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(Albany, NY) - Senator José M. Serrano, and the Senate Democratic Majority advanced an environmental legislative package that will continue to protect the state’s environment. The bills being advanced will prohibit the use of hazardous chemicals, protect New York State’s wetlands, establish a moratorium on operation of cryptocurrency mining centers, prohibit motor vehicle owners from tampering with or bypassing emission control devices, expand water testing in schools, prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species, and create a carpet stewardship program.

"Our natural environment is our most precious resource, and I'm proud that the legislation we passed today will ban the use of dangerous chemicals, ensure water testing in schools, protect our waters and lands, and address environmental justice by requiring equal treatment in the enforcement of environmental laws and policies."

The legislation advanced by the Senate Majority includes:

● Prohibit the Use of Hazardous Chemicals: This bill, S.4630B, sponsored by Senator
Todd Kaminsky, prohibits the intentional addition of hazardous flame retardants to
upholstered furniture, mattresses, and certain electronic displays.
● The Birds and Bees Protection Act: This bill, S.699B, sponsored by Senator Brad
Hoylman, prohibits the sale or purchase of certain seeds that are pretreated with
pesticides toxic to pollinators, and requires the Department of Environmental
Conservation to review the harmful effects of pesticides toxic to pollinators.
● Freshwater Wetlands: This bill, S.5116C, sponsored by Senator Pete Harckham,
expands protections for freshwater wetlands and streamlines the wetlands permitting
process.
● School Water Testing: This bill, S.2122A, sponsored by Senator Gustavo Rivera, will
expand water testing in schools by increasing testing frequency, removing exemptions
and lowering lead levels.
● Environmental Justice for All: This bill, S.1232, sponsored by Senator Michael
Gianaris, declares a state policy of equal treatment in the development and enforcement
of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.
● Moratorium on Operation of Cryptocurrency Mining Centers: This bill, S.6486B,
sponsored by Senator Kevin Parker, establishes a moratorium on the new or expanded
use of fossil fuels to power the operation of cryptocurrency mining centers and requires
completion of an environmental impact study of the cryptocurrency industry in the State.
● Emission Tampering Act of 2021: This bill, S.6172, sponsored by Senator Brad
Hoylman, prohibits the disabling, removal or interference with emission control devices,
and requires motor vehicle inspection stations to inspect for such devices and requires
their removal.
● The New York State Low Embodied Carbon Concrete Leadership Act: This bill,
S.542A, sponsored by Senator Todd Kaminsky, establishes a low embodied carbon
procurement standard for concrete used in public construction projects that will
incentivize emissions reductions throughout the concrete production process.
● Aquatic Invasive Species Inspection Stations: This bill, S.7010A, sponsored by
Senator Todd Kaminsky, authorizes the Department of Environmental Conservation to
establish aquatic invasive species inspection stations in the Adirondack Park and provides
for owners of watercraft to self-certify that reasonable precautions have been taken to
detect and remove aquatic invasive species.
● Carpet Stewardship Program: This bill, S.5027A, sponsored by Senator Brian
Kavanagh, creates an Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) program for carpeting.
This program will establish goals for carpet recycling and phase out PFAS chemicals
from new carpet production.
● Kept Cultivation in Underwater Lands: This bill, S.6532A, sponsored by Senator
Todd Kaminsky, permits kelp cultivation in underwater lands at Gardiner's and Peconic
bays.
● The Soil Health and Climate Resiliency Act: This bill, S.4722A, sponsored by Senator
Michelle Hinchey, establishes the soils health initiative, the climate-resilient farming
initiative, and promotes the research on soil health, all spearheaded by the Department of
Agriculture and Markets. This bill will encourage agricultural producers across the state
to improve and maintain the health of farms, as well as protect natural resources and the
health, safety, and welfare of all New Yorkers.