New York City bans inefficient glass skyscrapers, WA state to end coal

(Climate Change News, 23 Apr 2019) New York mayor announces sweeping climate change programme, while Washington’s power will be carbon-neutral by 2030.

The Big Apple and Western state respectively released a city-wide “Green New Deal” and clean power bill on Monday.

New York mayor Bill de Blasio unveiled a raft of proposals in a bid to cut greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 30% by 2030, the deadline set by UN scientists to limit warming to 1.5C.

“Every day we wait is a day our planet gets closer to the point of no-return. New York City’s Green New Deal meets that reality head on,” said de Blasio. “We are confronting the same interests that created the climate crisis and deepened inequality. There’s no time to waste. We’re taking action now, before it’s too late.”

The New York programme, dubbed OneNYC 2050, sets out to achieve carbon neutrality and 100% clean energy by 2050 by modernising the city’s buildings, transport, and boosting clean energy. In a global first, New York City will be ordering all existing buildings of 25,000 square feet or more, of which there are 50,000 across the city, to carry out energy upgrades in a bid to slash their emissions. Buildings account for 70% of the city’s carbon pollution. The plan bans inefficient all-glass constructions, many of which have defined the city’s iconic skyline. Such buildings will have to meet strict conditions to be built in future.

Moreover, the city’s administration will seek to power its operations from 100% clean energy by connecting the city to zero-emission Canadian hydropower. The entire raft of packages, which includes both new and already committed cash, will cost $14bn.

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Climate Change News, 23 Apr 2019: New York City bans inefficient glass skyscrapers, WA state to end coal