Business, Education and Labor Voices Express Support for Governor Cuomo’s Proposed Clean Energy Standard

The James A. Fitzpatrick nuclear plant.

The James A. FitzPatrick nuclear plant.

OSWEGO, NY – The Upstate Energy Jobs Coalition, which includes business, education, labor, and economic development organizations, today (April 8) expressed strong support for Governor Andrew Cuomo’s proposed Clean Energy Standard following the release of a cost analysis of the plan issued by the state’s Department of Public Service.

The CES mandates that 50 percent of all electricity consumed in New York by 2030 come from clean and renewable energy sources.

In addition to promoting the development of clean energy sources to preserve New York’s status as an environmental leader, the CES would properly credit upstate nuclear plants for their carbon-free power to help ensure their continued operation, and contribution to the state’s goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by the year 2030.

The UEJ also highlighted an analysis by The Brattle Group that concludes that the benefits of preserving the entire upstate nuclear fleet will save New York almost $2.5 billion in electricity and environmental costs annually.

“The state’s analysis confirms what most of us already know, which is that the costs of allowing upstate nuclear plants, with all of their economic and clean energy benefits, to close prematurely greatly outweigh the costs of implementing the CES,” said L. Michael Treadwell, CEO of Operation Oswego County, the county’s industrial development agency. “The closure of FitzPatrick, Ginna and Nine Mile Point would be a severe blow to the economy upstate, a region that’s already struggling to turn its economy around. The four nuclear power plants in upstate New York are economic engines that equate to a $3.16 billion contribution to the state’s gross domestic product, as well as $144 million in net state tax revenues annually, including more than $60 million in annual state and local property taxes, according to a study by The Brattle Group.”

“The Cuomo administration and policymakers’ support for the CES means support for upstate New York’s hotels, restaurants, schools, food markets, banks and families,” said Sean Bruno, superintendent of the Mexico Academy and Central School District. “We hope the PSC will act swiftly to ensure its timely implementation on their behalf, and do appreciate the administration’s leadership on this issue.”

“New York’s upstate nuclear plants are responsible for almost 25,000 jobs that hard-working families rely on,” said Ted Skerpon, president of IBEW Local 97. “This is in addition to the thousands of jobs these plants provide to the region as a whole, including building tradesmen and skilled workers involved in the refueling and maintenance of these plants, and the local businesses whose operation depends on these workers. The CES would help keep people working and in turn allow our communities to stay strong.”