The April 8 guest column by Mark Dunlea, chairman of the Green Education and Legal Fund, called for bold climate action and mentioned proposed state legislation. The proposed legislation calls for, among other topics, for all new houses built starting in 2020 to be heated solely by heat pumps and only electric cars to be sold starting in 2025.
If New York state government was really serious about climate change, legislative action is not a necessary first step. Instead, Gov. Andrew Cuomo could administratively require all state offices (owned and leased to include the capitol) to be heated with heat pumps or electricity by, say, 2023. He could require all cars and trucks bought by the state to be electric-powered by 2025.
To show his resolve, he could also order the closure of all airports in New York state by 2020. These actions, combined with the proposed legislation to eliminate all nuclear- and carbon-powered electric generation by 2030, would put New York state in the lead in fighting climate change.
If the governor can’t take these easy administrative actions, then it would show New York state isn’t really serious about fighting climate change.