As New York State continues down the path of being a clean energy leader nationwide and even with recent advancements in technology and significant government investment in renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power, New York needs a reliable partner in getting there, as renewable
sources of energy alone cannot consistently power New York. No one denies the impacts of climate change, but what is needed now more than ever is a realistic plan to transition to alternative energies and still keep the lights and the heat on for all New Yorkers.

Natural gas is a clean, affordable, and reliable source of energy and is in large part responsible for making the United States a net exporter of energy for the first time in our nation’s history, thereby reducing our reliance on foreign oil.

Natural gas has become increasingly important for New York State. New York needs additional resources to meet growing demand. Natural gas is a reliable and readily available energy source that can achieve this goal.
– Cleaner Energy: Natural gas is helping to address climate change by lowering carbon dioxide emissions. While U.S. gas production is up 37 percent since 1990, greenhouse gas emissions are down 17 percent.
– Cheaper Energy: Expanded access to natural gas will help keep energy prices low by increasing supply to meet growing demand.
– Complements Renewables: Natural gas works in concert with renewable energy generation, like wind and solar, by providing reliable energy supplies.
– Energy Independence: 98 percent of the natural gas used in the United States is produced in North America.

The simple fact is that New Yorkers rely on natural gas. Sixty percent of New York households heat with natural gas, and 40 percent of our electricity comes from power plants that run on
natural gas, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA). Whether New Yorkers heat their homes in the winter or power their air conditioners in the summer, natural
gas is fueling their everyday lives.

Additionally, according to the Western Energy Alliance, natural gas “is the number one reason the United States has reduced greenhouse gas emissions more than any other country.” The shift from dirtier burning fuels like coal to natural gas has produced 57 percent more carbon-emission reductions than have all the renewable energy sources that have come online since 2005, EIA data show.

Renewable energy, while increasingly important, today accounts for only 30 percent of New York’s power generation, and 25 of that 30 percent comes from hydroelectric dams. With the Indian Point nuclear reactors now shut down, New York will need even more natural gas for power plants to fill the gap. Also, the more New York moves to intermittent renewable energy sources like wind and solar, the more vital it will be to have natural gas power plants online and available to cycle up as quickly as the wind stops blowing or the sun goes behind a cloud.

Equally as important as reliability is cost. Did you know that 25% of your current utility bill is made up of taxes and fees used to fund renewable energy? Did you know that with more mandates coming online as a result of the passage of and the implementation of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) those on bill costs are set to go up even further?

This comes against the backdrop of New Yorkers and Americans struggling to pay their utility bills. According to a Federal Survey in 2018, 50% of those experiencing energy insecurity are African American and 40% are Hispanic. Further, Americans over 75 are spending a greater percentage of their income on utility bills-more than any other group.

These statistics are significant because these same groups who are struggling are the same ones that politicians who are recklessly adding costs to utility bills claim to care the most

The truth is, natural gas is the only source of energy that can fully reliably, and affordably meet the needs of New Yorkers – and do so without increasing energy costs to homeowners and businesses or increasing the cost of new construction to alleviate New York’s affordable housing problem.

As we move forward, New York must take a more comprehensive approach to energy – one that includes natural gas as a reliable partner in the quest to generate power, serve as a clean, affordable source of energy, help reduce our carbon footprint and also control costs for consumers.

Our organization will continue to point out the flaws in the current approach, while offering positive, thoughtful alternatives for consideration that can help New York reach its goals without throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

New Yorkers for Affordable Energy stands ready, willing, and able to work with our elected leaders in New York to find a pathway forward that meets both our shared desire for a clean energy future and the real energy needs of everyday New Yorkers at a reasonable price.