New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo earned almost universal praise this week following his decision to extend the NY-Sun Initiative to install ten times more solar power in the state by 2023.
The president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), Rhone Resch, was joined by Peter Olmsted of Vote Solar in leading the applause for the decision, which is seen as a bold step in a solar direction that is likely to support thousands of new jobs and lead to lower energy costs. Further accolades were heaped on to Cuomo's shoulders by the New York Solar Energy Industries Association (NYSEIA) and the Clean Energy Counsel at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in New York.
"To his credit, Governor Cuomo understands that solar energy is one of the fastest-growing industries in America, powering both Wall Street and Main Street," said Resch. "Today, solar is creating thousands of jobs in New York and pumping hundreds of millions of dollars into the states economy. But just as importantly, it's also helping to reduce pollution and protect our increasingly endangered environment. Thats a win all the way around."
Peter Olmsted, East Coast regional director at Vote Solar, was equally effusive in his praise for Governor Cuomo. "The NY-Sun Initiative is designed to do something remarkable: to transform the state's energy landscape and make solar a cost-effective energy option for more New Yorkers.
"It's exciting to see that ambitious solar energy vision quickly turn into real opportunity under the Governors leadership."
Joe Stering of the NYPIRG called the extension a "big win for New Yorkers and our environment", while Kit Kennedy of the NRDC said: "In just three years, New York has gone from a couple hundred rooftops with solar panels statewide to cracking to top ten states in solar installations nationwide."
The president of the NYSEIA, Shaun Chapman, thanked Governor Cuomo for extending the initiative, which he called "the greatest market opportunity for solar anywhere in the U.S."
Since launching in 2012, the NY-Sun Initiative has delivered 300 MW of solar PV capacity in the state. What was originally meant to be a two-year pilot program has now been extended and enhanced through to 2023, by which date an estimated 3 GW of solar PV capacity will have been installed across the state.