As Home Heating Costs Soar, Legislators and Advocates Urge Governor Hochul to Pass the All-Electric Building Act

New Analysis Finds Legislation Could Save NY Households Nearly $1,000 Annually in Heating Costs

Today, a coalition of nearly two dozen state lawmakers and consumer and climate advocates launched a new effort to save New York households money on home heating bills by urging passage of the All-Electric Building Act, which a new analysis shows could save an average of nearly $1,000 per year in heating costs for families living in new homes. The move comes as New York power utilities warn rate increases for winter energy costs far exceeding those of the national average (28%) — Con Edison has warned of a 32% rate increase and National Grid predicts a 39% spike in heating bills this winter.

 

A new analysis commissioned by Spring Street Climate Fund finds that under the All-Electric Building Act, New York residents of new homes could save an average of $904 each year on home energy bills. As many as 50,000 new homes are constructed every year in the state — the legislation would apply to new buildings under seven stories starting in 2024 and larger buildings by 2027. 

Legislators and advocates, including Food & Water Watch, New York Communities for Change, NYPIRG, and Rewiring America called for Governor Hochul to include the All-Electric Building Act (S6843C/A8431B), which has 80 co-sponsors in the New York State Senate and Assembly, in her state budget, due in January.

Senator Brian Kavanagh, chair of the Senate Housing Committee and bill sponsor said:

“Enacting the All-Electric Building Act is one of several major steps we need to take as soon as possible to meet our climate action goals, to rein in the cost of heating and powering our homes, and to usher in a cleaner, more secure future. The study released today illustrates the cost savings New Yorkers will benefit from, and fossil-fuel free buildings will also eliminate dangerous air contaminants that are emitted by indoor gas appliances, which have been linked to higher rates of respiratory illness in children. We have a chance to take decisive action to stop constructing buildings that make both people and the planet sick. This bill will bring us one step closer to a future of healthy and sustainable homes.”

Assemblymember Emily Gallagher said, "Fossil fuel heating is dirty, polluting and crushingly expensive, fueling international conflict abroad and poor health at home. We can save New Yorkers money and help meet our legally-mandated climate goals by passing the All-Electric Buildings Act. It's past time to reject gas industry misinformation and chart a cleaner, greener and more affordable course for our great state." 

“Nowhere is our crippling addiction to fossil fuels more obvious than in the skyrocketing heating bills New Yorkers are bracing for this winter,” said Alex Beauchamp, Northeast Region Director of Food & Water Watch. “Every new building constructed with fossil fuels deepens our reliance on the dirty energy infrastructure raising our rates. With all electric buildings, New Yorkers won’t have to struggle to keep the heat on this winter. Governor Hochul must include the All-Electric Building Act in her state budget to move off fossil fuels, save ratepayers money and boldly tackle the climate crisis.”

Max Shron, one of the authors of the analysis and a part of the Win Climate team, said, "When you run the numbers, the data is clear: the All-Electric Building Act would save money for New York households. The reality is, building new homes with all-electric heat pumps would save money on average for households across the state, and the largest savings would be in rural areas where many homes are still built with expensive propane heating systems, which lock homeowners into high energy costs for decades. Building all-electric is a win-win for homeowners looking to save money and for everyone who cares about climate change."

State Senator Brad Hoylman said, “Climate change is the biggest battle of our lifetime, and we must take action now by passing the All Electric Buildings Act. Ensuring new buildings are fully electrified will significantly reduce their climate impact and provide further greenhouse gas reductions as the electrical grid is made greener. I am proud to be a co-sponsor of Senator Kavanagh’s important legislation.”

Assemblymember Chris Burdick said, “The All-Electric Building act will not only cut greenhouse gas emissions but will also save New York families money on their heating bills. This is commonsense legislation that not only supports the goals of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act but also helps our families keep their costs down. It’s a win-win and I hope we can get this over the finish line.”

Assemblymember Rebecca Seawright said, “Last year, New York City banned use of fossil fuels in new building construction to decrease climate pollution in the decades to come. Extending the New York City action statewide will save an additional 4 million metric tons of CO2 beyond the 2 million metric tons estimated to be saved by NYC's law. If we are serious about climate change, we must take steps now to reduce the use of fossil fuels.”

Assemblymember Marcela Mitaynes said,With the cost of living skyrocketing - rents, food and utilities - we must use the tools we have to make sure we are making cost-effective energy options available to our constituents. As private utilities warn about increasing costs and impending rate-hikes, legislators should support making cost savings available to households while addressing our climate crisis. It’s urgent that we pass the All-Electric Buildings Act.”

Senator Liz Krueger said, "Once again we're heading into another winter with New Yorkers facing skyrocketing costs for gas and oil heating. But instead of blaming the real culprits - price gouging by fossil fuel companies and price fixing by petro-state dictators - the polluters' lobby is spending millions on their decades-old tactics of deny, deflect, and delay. We no longer have time to play their games - our climate can't take it, and New Yorkers can't afford it. The All-Electric Buildings Act is just plain common sense. It will allow us to stop digging ourselves deeper into a fossil-fueled hole and start the process of building a livable and affordable future for ourselves, our children, and our grandchildren."

Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick said, “New York City has led the way in prohibiting the installation of dirty infrastructure in new construction, and now the State must do so as well. As we move to meet the ambitious goals set forth in the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act by using renewable sources to generate our electricity, we must also reject the installation of fossil fuel burning furnaces, stoves, and other appliances in new construction that pollute the air we breathe in our homes and add greenhouse gasses to the atmosphere. When this bill is signed into law, we will be much closer to ensuring a greener, brighter future for a clean environment.”

“The All-Electric Building Act will help New York break its dependence on the polluting fossil fuel industry and help households access more affordable home heating options. With the climate crisis before us and New York’s private utility companies once again warning of rate increases, we cannot delay any longer. I stand with Assemblymember Gallagher, my colleagues, and advocates in urging the Governor to include this critical initiative in the upcoming state budget,” said Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon.

“We are well past the question of “whether” to reduce the use of fossil fuels. Now we’re at the “how” and one answer is the All Electric Buildings Act,” said Assemblyman Thomas J. Abinanti.

Assemblymember Robert Carroll said, “To meet the goals of the CLCPA the State must take aggressive action and pass the All Electric Buildings Act. With the vast majority of NYC’s greenhouse gas emissions coming from buildings, the AEBA requires the aggressive timeline necessary to eliminate fossil fuels in new buildings. We don’t have time to wait. To avert a climate catastrophe we need to act now and pass the All Electric Buildings Act.”

“The climate crisis continues to pose an existential threat to New Yorkers across our city and state. Utility costs are skyrocketing, and New Yorkers already struggling to make ends meet are wondering if they will be able to afford to heat their homes in the coming months. Communities of color and low-income communities like the ones I represent in Queens suffer the most from our inaction. It’s time for New York to break its addiction to fossil fuels. I’m proud to co-sponsor the All-Electric Buildings Act in the Assembly and stand with the #GasFreeNY coalition in calling on Governor Hochul to include the bill in her upcoming state budget,” said Assemblymember Jessica González-Rojas.

Said Assemblymember Anna Kelles, "I am incredibly proud to represent a district where heat pumps in new buildings are basically the norm - we have proven that these high-performing energy-efficient buildings are cost effective, comfortable, healthy and safe. It is critical that we pass the All Electric Building Act and make sure that new buildings are not contributing to the climate crisis. Not only is going all-electric good for the planet, but it will also save New York households hundreds of dollars each year."

Assemblymember Zohran Mamdani said, “Making sure that new buildings across the state are all-electric is the first step towards transitioning to a fully renewable future. Governor Hochul must include the All-Electric Building Act in her state budget to help our state transition off of fossil fuels, and ensure that we are on track to meet the ambitious goals we've set for ourselves here in New York State with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act." 

Pete Sikora, Climate & Inequality Campaigns Director for New York Communities for Change said, “It’s time for Governor Hochul to end gas in new construction to save New Yorkers money, create jobs and fight climate change. It’s time to match up the big political rhetoric with action and results.”

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