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NYS Climate Action Council Finalizes Scoping Plan

20 December 2022

The NY state Climate Action Council voted 19 to 3 yesterday to approve the CAC Scoping Plan. As part of this aggressive program to address climate change, the commission approved plans to phase out fossil fuel-burning furnaces beginning as soon as 2025.

The plan also requires energy-efficient electric heat pumps or other non-combustion heating systems in every new home built in 2025 or thereafter. 

For existing homes, after 2030 residents whose fossil fuel-burning heating systems fail will have to replace them with a zero-emission system.

Changes to the plan include the elimination of language that would have called for immediate passage of legislation requiring all-electric construction statewide, and additions that allow fuels like hydrogen and “renewable natural gas” or factory farm biogas to qualify as clean energy.

Some of the policies approved in the Climate Action Council’s “final scoping plan’' require further action before they can be enforced. For example, the new regulations on heating systems will require changes to the state building code. Other changes may require new legislation; this will take time.

But the council’s “final scoping plan” is now the official policy for how state government will meet goals for greenhouse gas reduction required under a state law passed in 2019. There is still a lot of work to do to implement this plan. To emphasize how challenging this could be for legislators and to put into perspective the timeline issues, keep in mind that Vermont created a very drastic plan to address climate change then ultimately passed very little of the legislation written to put that plan into play during the 2022 legislative session. 

More information will be forthcoming as I delve deeper into the Scoping Plan, but please feel free to reach out to me at any time.

You can review the 445-page plan here

Sources: NewYorkUpstate/WKBW

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