A War on Banning Gas and Oil Connections in New Buildings


Good Morning. Today is Tuesday. Today we will explore an unfolding war against Government Kathy Hochul’s proposal to ban gas and oil connections in new buildings. And we’ll find out why New York City’s transition from gas-fired vehicles to electric vehicles started off slow.

Given the share of daily anxiety New Yorkers devote to traffic and parking, whether they drive or not, it may surprise you that cars and trucks are not the largest contributor to the state’s risks to climate change and civilization-threatening risks. Buildings.

Yes, the threat comes from inside the house. More precisely, from our homes, apartments, offices, factories and stores. Statewide, 32 percent of the planet-warming gases in the atmosphere come from heating buildings and cooking in them.

How to reduce these emissions, Gov. Beginning with the state budget Hochul proposed, it is shaping up to be one of the toughest political battles of the year. One of the most aggressive and controversial climate plans is to ban gas and oil connections in new buildings from 2027.

The move would make New York the first U.S. state and the world’s largest jurisdiction to stop adding fossil-fuel stoves and heaters and require new buildings to use only electricity, which by state law must come entirely from emissions. Free resources until 2040. Experts say such a move by a real estate and financial capital could be crucial to the country’s energy future, while other states are discussing similar measures. (New York City, where buildings generate 40 percent of emissions, It introduced a similar measure last year.)

So the stakes are high in the fierce lobbying and public relations battle between climate advocacy groups that support the proposal and the gas and oil industries that oppose it. There have been unexpected political aberrations – chief among these, according to lawmakers, the current obstacle to Ms Hochul’s proposal is the State Assembly, the same body that initiated the state’s ambitious climate law that was taken over by Democrats in 2019.

That’s why some advocates of the gas ban are fed up with the Assembly leadership. While keeping his mouth shut on the measure, spokesman Carl Heeastie said that the overall budget debate should be reserved for financial decisions, not other policy issues.

Climate groups like Food and Water Watch argue that its location does not align with its region in the Bronx, which has long been hit hard by environmental inequality. The county has one of the nation’s highest rates of childhood asthma and some of the dirtiest buildings in the state.

In another budget debate, both the House and Senate are pushing the governor to allocate billions of dollars more to tackling climate change – including at least $1 billion a year just to help low- and middle-income households strengthen their homes to avoid burning fossil fuels. They say that without this level of spending, the state will not be able to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2050. This target was included in the climate law more than two years ago.

If the gas connection measure does not enter the budget, the discussion will continue on a new version in a separate bill. The points of contention are numerous: Opponents say the state risks stifling its ability to generate enough renewable electricity to heat their homes, and electric heat pumps will cost consumers more. Proponents say the pumps are more cost-effective in the long run.


Weather forecast

Prepare for the possibility of a late afternoon shower with steady temperatures in the mid-50s. Showers continue in the evening.

alternative side parking

Valid until April 14 (Holy Thursday).


Amazon workers at a Staten Island warehouse launched the biggest union battle ever to be remembered last weekend. They further organized the company’s multimillion-dollar consulting team. a homegrown effort led by a recently laid off workernot national union staff – and managed to gain a vote to create the first troop of the mail order giant in the United States.

That’s a lot of flexibility, so we wonder: How does the public face of Amazon affect the mood? By that, of course, we mean people who deliver. More than 2.4 million packages One day in New York. (Daily. That’s more than one package for every four residents. People: What is this and do we really need them all? But we’re getting off topic.)

Do people carrying Amazon gifts (or specially shaped insoles like I recently ordered) feel empowered, indifferent, inspired – or envious? The new union doesn’t cover them — they work for what Amazon calls “delivery service partners” or as independent contractors. (Voting also does not affect employees. More than 50 other warehouses In the city and in the suburbs.)

But could it be the next drivers? Teamsters hope so.

In the glow of last week’s victory, this union’s new national presidentSean O’Brien told my colleague Noam Scheiber that the International Brotherhood of Teamsters is prepared to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to consolidate Amazon – perhaps starting with “major metropolitan cities with strong worker connections and strong political support.”

“Amazon is so perverted and so disrespectful to their employees, there’s a huge turnover rate there,” he said. “But I think as a political, community and transport union we can put more pressure on the company. I think we will achieve great success.”

Amazon reiterated its view on unionization in a statement: “We believe it is best for our employees to engage directly with the company.”



Speaking of ambitious but challenging climate goals, New York City has pledged to electrify its entire municipal fleet – about 30,000 vehicles – by 2035.

Currently, as report by my colleagues Winnie Hu, Nadav Gavrielov and Jack EwingOf the city’s 5,900 buses, only 15 are electric. Less than 1 percent of the city’s 1.9 million registered personal vehicles are all-electric. The Police only has one electric patrol car, and the Cleaning Department only has one electric garbage truck.

The barriers reflect, in many ways, the chicken-and-egg problem the government is facing with renewable energy.

The mantra for reducing greenhouse gas emissions is: electrify everything. But just as the government still has a long way to go before it can generate enough renewable electricity for everything, the city is struggling with technological and resource constraints.

There are only 86 public curbside chargers, a drop in the bucket in a city where many residents have money and a tendency to buy electric cars, but few have a garage or driveway to allow them to plug into a car.

Another problem: Electric fire trucks that meet the city’s standards are not produced.

Many of these problems await solutions that require a shortage of two things. First, federal dollars to build infrastructure, train workers, and educate consumers. Second, in a chaotic time, focused bandwidth for the public to decide what they want on the road to climate action and for state, city and local officials to work together on it.



METROPOLITAN diary

Dear Diary:

I was working as a fourth grade teacher at a private school on the East Side. As an end-of-year present, parents had their daughters engraved their names on a silver picture frame wrapped in yards of tissue paper inside a Tiffany box.

As I opened the package, I had a graceful look on my face. I lifted the frame and smiled at each of the 15 girls who “signed” it.

I snuck into a pawnshop on Lexington Avenue after school. The man at the counter looked at the Tiffany box approvingly.



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