New York State releases draft energy plan

The New York State Energy Plan, per the Governor, has five overarching strategies:

  • Produce, deliver and use energy more efficiently;
  • Support the development of in-State energy supplies;
  • Invest in energy and transportation infrastructure to support policy objectives;
  • Stimulate innovation in energy technologies to support the transition to a clean energy economy; and
  • Engage communities, local governments, neighboring states, and the federal government in energy-related activities.

The just-released draft plan (final plan scheduled for release in Fall 2009) paints a generally upbeat portrait of wind’s potential to be a more meaningful part of New York’s energy mix.

The section relating specifically to wind energy in the Renewable Energy Assessment portion of the draft plan is available here.

As readers of this blog well know, the siting of wind power facilities has garnered much attention in the state (to put it mildly). One of the central issues is the role of local communities.

Regarding siting (See Siting New Energy Infrastructure issue brief), the draft plan acknowledges that:

While the opportunity to seek all necessary approvals under State law, in a single forum, is an advantage from the electric transmission developers’ perspective, one limitation of the State’s current siting statute is the ability of affected communities, particularly those with limited resources, to participate meaningfully in the process.

Nevertheless, the draft plan (same brief) appears to favor a state-determined siting regime, stating that:

Because there is currently no single State forum to consider electric generation siting decisions, a coordinated review is required among various State and local governmental entities. Therefore, developers must undertake several different permitting processes. The establishment of a comprehensive electric generation siting statute would simplify the siting process and help ensure meaningful participation by the public.  Such a statute may also help attract capital for new generation infrastructure, including wind generating units.

Selected draft plan components and related items:

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