Cynthia Nixon Announces Clean Energy Plan
Governor candidate Cynthia Nixon announced her clean energy plan on Friday, April 20th at the YMCA in Arverne. Nixon took a firm stand against fossil fuels following the controversy over the Northeast Supply Enhancement Project, which would place 23 miles of new pipeline infrastructure from Rockaway to New Jersey. The candidate pledged to refuse any monetary support from the oil, gas, and coal industry and laid out her three-point plan for climate change.
The first part of the plan is an immediate transition to 100 percent renewable energy, and the passing of Climate and Communities Protection Act is how she plans to make that happen. The CCPA outlines how to eliminate greenhouse emissions is every sector, as well as how to protect those on the frontlines of climate change and provide new jobs in clean energy. The second part of her plan is to stop all new fossil fuel infrastructure.
“I am so appalled that Governor Cuomo will not stop the proposed Williams [Companies’] pipeline project that will cost over a billion dollars,” said Nixon. “This is not a path to 100 percent renewables, this is a path to continuing climate disaster.”
The final part of her climate plan is to hold corporate polluters accountable for their environmental waste by imposing a polluters tax. The tax, an idea circulating California and other state legislatures are trying to make happen, would generate billions of dollars, which she plans to invest into building renewable energy, protecting communities at the front lines of climate change, supporting workers transitioning into the new energy economy, and giving rebates to low and middle-income residents to save them money on their energy bills.
Before Nixon took the stage, local and energy activists, as well as Sandy survivors spoke in favor of Nixon for governor.
“It hurts that I can’t protect my kids from climate change,” said Sandy survivor Rachel Rivera, who gave an impassioned speech about her 12-year-old daughter who now suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as a result of the superstorm. Rivera and her children lost everything in the storm, including family pets, photos, and endless things that can’t be replaced.
Nixon and other community leaders also spoke on their feelings toward Governor Andrew Cuomo and his actions regarding climate change. They claim that while Cuomo certainly talks the talk, he fails to walk the walk. The president of Indivisible Nation Brooklyn, a political action group, lamented her experience in trying to get Governor Cuomo and state senators to sign two bills: the CCPA and the Climate Community Investment Act. These acts will help move New York to 100% renewable energy and fund investment for renewables for frontline communities like the Rockaways, respectively. After organizing meetings with Cuomo and staff Lisa Tolan and her organization has gotten little to no progression on climate change legislation.
“With an imminent Senate majority, there is no more excuse for climate registration to die in committee,” said Tolan.
During the meeting, news broke that the Department of Environmental Conservation denied a critical permit to The Williams Companies regarding NESEP, to Nixon’s pleasure.