Commentary: All-Electric Building Act will move us closer to climate goals

Brian Kavanagh and Emily Gallagher

Originally published in Times Union

An energy transformation movement is underway in New York. Two years ago, we committed to a cleaner, greener future with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Four months ago, Ithaca became the first U.S. city to mandate all existing buildings be electrified. A month ago, New York City became the largest city in the country to shift to electrification in new construction. And earlier this month, Gov. Kathy Hochul finally committed to “2 million climate-friendly homes” and “zero on-site greenhouse gas emissions” by 2027. New York state is ready to emerge as a leader in building decarbonization.

In 2021, we introduced the All-Electric Building Act, which aims to cut carbon emissions by millions of tons across the state and require new buildings to have all-electric appliances for space and water heating and cooking by 2023. It also mandates that state agencies identify policies to make electricity affordable and ensure its access to low-income residents.