Testimony of the Real Estate Board of New York to the Committee on Environmental Protection of the New York City Council Concerning Int. 419

Zachary Steinberg

Vice President Policy & Planning

November 24, 2019

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REBNY thanks the Council for the opportunity to testify on using the city’s water supply and land to support the generation of renewable energy.  

BILL: Intro No. 419-2018

SUBJECT: A Local Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to generating, capturing and utilizing energy from city's water supply, wastewater treatment systems and natural bodies of water

SPONSORS: Councilmember Costa Constantinides  

Int. 419 would amend the New York City administrative code to require that any equipment used in the generation or capture of energy from the city’s water supply, wastewater systems and natural bodies of water be certified safe for drinking water.  

REBNY shares the Council’s concern for public health and agrees with the measure to ensure that any turbines or equipment used for renewable energy production not harm the water supply. In addition to safety, we ask the proposal also address water pressure. Generating energy from water flow by definition will decrease the pressure. To avoid changes in service volume, we propose the legislation text be updated to read “…and would not negatively impact the safety of drinking water [and will not decrease the delivery pressure beyond a de minimus extent].”  

Additionally, we believe the proposal could be further improved by expanding the type of energy captured or generated from the water supply from electrical to electrical and thermal.

Topics Covered

  • Environment