ALBANY, N.Y. — Thanks to increased production of cleaner-burning natural gas and safer, state-of-the-art technologies and techniques, families, businesses and farmers throughout New York state saved nearly $30.9 billion between 2006 and 2016, according to a state report by Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA), with calculations originally developed by Orion Strategies.
Families saved close to $15.7 billion and commercial and industrial users saved nearly $15.2 billion, according to the report. The analysis, titled “The Big Apple Is not the Only Big Thing in New York, the Energy Savings are Too,” was released at a New Yorkers for Affordable Energy Breakfast, in Albany, N.Y., today.
However, more is needed, the analysis warned. Because of a years-long ban on natural gas production and unending pushback against pipeline expansion to help ease energy bottlenecks, New Yorkers still pay nearly 40 percent above the national average for electricity, CEA calculated. These needlessly high expenses are taxing for many, none more than the 2.7-plus million residents in poverty.
The analysis was the latest in a series by CEA detailing how the national energy revolution had increased job growth, disposable income, and economic investment and helped revitalize communities countrywide. In New York’s case, it also details how the state’s self-inflicted lack of availability to energy as well as the failure to build adequate infrastructure to deliver that affordable energy is harming cash-strapped families, manufacturers, and businesses of all sizes.
Additional highlights from the report include:
- On average, each resident spent $2,524 to meet their energy needs in 2016. For the nearly 14 percent of the state’s population living at or below the poverty line, this translates to almost one-fifth of their income.
- For heat, roughly a quarter of state households use fuel oil; almost 60 percent use natural gas.
- New York is the sixth-largest natural gas-consuming state. About 40 percent of the state’s electricity generation is powered by natural gas.
- New York is a top-five petroleum-consuming state. About 80 percent of it used by the transportation section.
- The oil and natural gas industries contribute 258,500 jobs and account for more than $21.3 billion in wages statewide. It also provides over $35.8 billion to the state’s economy.
- From 2000 to 2017, nationwide emissions of key pollutants have decreased, including nitrogen oxides (by 52 percent), sulfur dioxide (by 83 percent), volatile organic compounds (by 19 percent) and fine particulate matter (by 37 percent).
“The good news is that lower-cost, cleaner-burning natural gas imported into the state has brought some relief to families and businesses and helped lawmakers meet their ambitious emissions goals,” Mike Butler, CEA’s Mid-Atlantic Director, said. “The bad news is that there isn’t enough of it. Those policymakers who continuously argue against natural gas, thwarting its development and production, curtailing pipeline construction and tying the state up in redundant, and often excessive litigation, are taking more money from those taxpayers who direly need cost savings.”
“Instead, more energy could be developed in state or delivered from nearby Pennsylvania and Ohio if New York’s leaders took time to understand better the economic and environmental performance related to natural gas production, usage, and infrastructure,” Butler added. “Those benefits include robust emissions reductions, usefulness as an ingredient for manufacturing almost everything we use every day (as well as the construction of windmills and solar panels), and electricity – as well as back-up electricity of wind and solar on cloudy or wind-free days. These are key facts that anti-development activists and far too many political leaders are may not know.”
To view the report, click here.
About Consumer Energy Alliance
Consumer Energy Alliance (CEA) is the leading consumer advocate for energy, bringing together families, farmers, small businesses, distributors, producers and manufacturers to support America’s environmentally sustainable energy future. With more than 550,000 members nationwide, our mission is to help ensure stable prices and energy security for households and businesses across the country. CEA works daily to encourage people across the nation to seek sensible, realistic and environmentally responsible solutions to meeting our energy needs.