Move over California and Massachusetts, New York has emerged as a national leader in battling climate change.
With the Trump administration shelving Obama-era climate plans and embracing the expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure, efforts to cut carbon emissions are now pushed almost entirely at the state level, especially in statehouses controlled by Democrats. And while Gov.
Andrew Cuomo has long touted his green credentials, the 2018 election put Albany under full Democratic control for only the second time since the 1930s. The power shift has pulled the Empire state to the left on a range of policy areas — including climate change.
The result: The sweeping emissions reduction and renewable energy measure Cuomo signed into law Thursday is the most ambitious legal mandate for cutting greenhouse gases in the nation, requiring an 85 percent reduction from 1990 levels over the next three decades and a carbon-free electric system by 2040.