Testimony

The Real Estate Board of New York to The New York City Council Committee on Environmental Protection

Zach Steinberg

Senior Vice President of Policy

November 16, 2021

REBNY appreciates the City Council’s interest in pursuing legislation to reduce the use of onsite fossil fuel combustion in buildings. Reaching the objectives set out in the New York State Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) requires building emissions to be reduced, which includes the curtailment of fossil fuel combustion in buildings.

Realizing this goal require policy makers to carefully analyze several issues that will ultimately impact the effectiveness of the legislation. These issues include:

  • The reliability of our electricity systems,

  • The ability of technology to cost-effectively deliver efficient electric solutions to all types of buildings, and

  • The financial impact on tenants and residents.

Furthermore, to be successful such policies must be based on clear and consistent regulation at both the State and City levels and provide both financial support and technical assistance for buildings that need these tools. If implemented poorly, well-intentioned policies that seek to reduce emissions would fail to balance the competing needs of the city to grow our housing stock – including affordable housing – and create high quality office buildings that are critical to the City’s employment and tax base.