For Immediate Release
Ned Sullivan, President, 914 489 4630
Andy Bicking, Director of Public Policy, 914 489 1568
HUDSON VALLEY – Scenic Hudson, the largest environmental group focused on the Hudson River Valley, today applauded New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo for his 2021 State of the State Address. The organization recognizes the unprecedented challenges the state is facing due to the COVID pandemic, as well as inaction by the outgoing presidential administration to address climate change and other critical environmental issues. It commended the governor for his forward-looking and practical vision to transform the state’s clean energy economy in these challenging times.
Scenic Hudson President Ned Sullivan said: “The challenges presented by the COVID pandemic and the social changes the Hudson Valley experienced in 2020 set the stage for Governor Cuomo’s ambitious and forward-looking vision of a clean energy economy. Investing in this sector now is essential to address climate change, create jobs and secure the Empire State’s place as an international leader. Now more than ever, we need to develop renewable energy, while of course ensuring that the Hudson Valley’s most critical natural resources are safeguarded in the process. We also applaud the governor’s commitment to transitioning away from fossil fuels and his emphasis on a just transition to renewables that acknowledges the disproportionate impacts of fossil fuel infrastructure on communities of color.”
Mr. Sullivan continued: “Scenic Hudson supports the governor’s calls for development of battery storage technology and facilities, and training a diverse clean energy workforce. We are enthusiastic about the proposition that the state would pursue a public-private partnership to build 100 renewable energy projects, and are ready to partner with it and local communities to ensure those projects are sited in a smart way that respects the region’s natural resources and the interests of local communities.”
Scenic Hudson Director of Public Policy Andy Bicking further elaborated on the organization’s upcoming legislative priorities: “A hallmark of the previous legislative session was passage of the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Scenic Hudson has been glad to participate in this effort. The state’s success in the year ahead will be defined by addressing the governor’s vision for a clean energy economy, implementing the relevant goals of the Climate Action Council and ensuring that the state has both the financial resources and policy framework to realize them.”
Mr. Bicking continued: “We look forward to working with the Legislature to address challenges and opportunities in the Hudson Valley. First, the state must deny permits for the Danskammer power plant, a fossil-fuel facility proposed on the Hudson River. It also must offer incentives for farmers to implement agricultural practices that sequester carbon and improve soil health, and enhance collaboration with local governments and community stakeholders to expedite the siting of renewable energy. In addition, it must provide resources to manage the Hudson River Estuary and carry on New York’s strong tradition of conserving natural assets and creating jobs by investing in the Environmental Protection Fund.”