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Budget deal worsens New Yorkers’ pain from state’s lunatic climate law

As part of last week’s budget deal, Gov. Kathy Hochul and the Legislature ordered the New York Power Authority to shut down all its fossil-fuel plants in just seven years — even though gas-fired plants supply nearly half the state’s electricity.

At the same time, they banned gas (for stoves and heating) in all new buildings by 2029, forcing them to be all-electric.

And by 2035, the only new cars sold here must also be purely electric.

Where on Earth do they think all the new juice that’s needed will come from?

The NYPA closures are just a small part of the state’s insane energy plan, which just forced National Grid to push for gas rate hikes of 17%, following Con Ed’s request up its gas charges 20%, and 12% for electricity.

Indeed, the law dictates that 70% of New York’s power must come from renewables by 2030 — so other gas-fueled plants will also have to close or scale back.

Just 10 years later, all gas plants must fold.

Meanwhile, building owners must race to install (inadequate) heat pumps, motorists get forced to tap savings for electric vehicles, and residents will dump possibly tens of thousands on retrofitting their homes.

To address the ballooning needs for juice, the plan imagines the state will suddenly — magically — ramp up renewable-energy production.

Yet solar and wind now account for just 6% of the state’s juice; natural gas, 43%.

Hydro and nuclear plants pump out the rest, but hydro is maxed out, and no one’s talking about new Empire State nuke plants even as the few remaining ones age out.

So renewables must grow from covering just 6% of the load to 50% by 2040, or 75% if the nuke plants close.

Solar and wind power account for just six percent of the state’s energy supply.
AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File

It’s all pure fantasy.

For starters, the drive for all-electric buildings, etc., plus natural growth in electricity demand, mean (per the New York State Independent System Operator, which oversees the state electricity market) that the state needs to add 83 gigawatts of capacity, plus make up for plants that close, in just 17 years.

Yet over the past 23 years, the Empire State has seen only 12.9 GWs added in total — most of it gas-fueled.

Oh, and Albany is sure someone will invent some new technology to deal with power shortages when the weather slows or stops solar and wind power generation.

Meanwhile, New Yorkers will be forking over more and more in pursuit of this lunacy.

The budget also included a “cap-and-invest” tax on company emissions that will then get passed to consumers.

Some experts put the total tab at as much as a whopping half-trillion bucks ($25,000 for every New Yorker; $100,000 for a family of four).

Last December, two brave members of the state’s Climate Council blasted the plan for failing to produce “an independent, transparent, unbiased, comprehensive consumer cost-impact analysis” — one spelling out costs to be borne by “residents through increased fees, taxes and energy bills.”

They called it “irresponsible” to prevent New Yorkers “from understanding the impact on their energy bills and the economy.”

Damn straight!

Bottom line: New York is bent on shutting down fossil-fuel power plants faster than it can possibly replace that generating capacity with renewable plants, and adding new electric demands with its bans on gas heat and cooking as well as gasoline-fueled cars.

Plus, New Yorkers will pay some huge (but unknown) fortune to build wind and solar plants and vast amounts of new transmission lines.

And none of it will have a significant impact in slowing climate change — a problem that, UN experts admit, will only make a small dent in economic growth even if the entire world stops doing anything more to fight it.

Is there a better definition of insanity?

This story originally appeared on NYPost

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