ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A new study says New York could get the power it needs from wind, water and sunlight by 2030 with a concerted push, though the state’s decade-long effort to significantly boost green energy shows how challenging that could be.
The study, led by researchers from Stanford and Cornell universities, provides a theoretical road map to how New Yorkers could rely on renewable energy within 17 years. It would require massive investments in wind turbines, solar panels and more from the windy shores off Long Island to sun-exposed rooftops upstate.
“It’s doable,” said co-author Robert Howarth, a Cornell professor of ecology and environmental biology. “It’s way outside of the realm of what most people are talking about … But I think people have been too pessimistic about what can be done.”
In fact, New York has been committed to significantly increasing green energy production for the past nine years under its renewable portfolio standard, which is funded by a surcharge of less than a dollar on monthly electricity bills. Then-Gov. George Pataki began the program in 2004 with the goal of New York relying on renewable resources for a quarter of its electricity by 2013.