March 29, 2015
NRDC’s Raya Salter discusses how New York’s Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) can help overcome economic energy insecurity — the inability to adequately meet basic household heating, cooling, and energy needs.
New York State is revolutionizing its electric system — a move NRDC has praised as positive and precedent-setting. The initiative, called ‘Reforming the Energy Vision’ or REV, will mean big changes for how communities, particularly low-income communities, interact with both energy and utilities. Among the initiative’s core principles, described by my colleague Jackson Morris as the “commandments of REV,” are addressing high energy bills and reducing carbon emissions.
New Yorkers Face a High Energy Burden
This is critical because according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, New Yorkers pay the nation’s second-highest energy prices. This leads to a crushing energy burden for low-income New Yorkers. According to a 2013 New York State Energy Research and Development Authority home energy costs threaten not only the ability of New York low-income households to retain access to energy services, but also threaten access to housing, food, medical care and other necessities of life. This is true across New York State, in both rural and urban areas. Further, many low income communities, particularly communities of color, need immediate relief from the impacts of dangerous carbon emissions that impact them the most. For these “environmental justice” communities, action on energy prices and clean and renewable power is of primary importance. For Full Article