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Climate Change Statutes, Regulations, and Policies

New York State continues to demonstrate leadership for climate change action. Below is a summary of key climate change statutes, regulations, and other policies in New York State, but is not intended to be a complete list of all of the State's climate-related statutes, regulations, and policies.

Climate Change Statutes

Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (Climate Act) (leaves DEC website)

  • Signed into law in July 2019 and became effective on January 1, 2020.
  • Climate Act directives for New York State include:
    • 40% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
    • 85% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2050
    • 100% zero-emission electricity by 2040
    • 70% Renewable Energy by 2030
    • 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind energy by 2035
    • 3,000 megawatts of energy storage by 2030
    • 6,000 megawatts of solar energy by 2025
    • 185 trillion BTU of end-use energy savings
  • Strong focus on Disadvantaged Communities (leaves DEC website), including a just transition to a low-carbon economy for Disadvantaged Communities.
  • Created a Climate Action Council to develop a scoping plan (leaves DEC website) of recommendations to meet Climate Act directives and achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions statewide.

Community Risk and Resiliency Act (CRRA)

  • Signed in 2014, CRRA requires applicants for certain state funding or permits for applicable programs demonstrate that future climate risks due to sea level rise, storm surge and flooding have been considered and incorporated into certain facility siting regulations.
  • Required Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) to adopt science-based sea level rise projections, which DEC did in 2017 via 6 NYCRR Part 490.
  • Required adding mitigation of risk due to sea level rise, storm surge, and flooding to the list of smart-growth criteria to be considered by state public-infrastructure agencies.
  • Required DEC and NYS Department of State to develop implementation guidance on the use of natural resources and natural processes to enhance community resilience.
  • Required the NYS Department of State and DEC to develop model local laws (leaves DEC website) that can help increase community resilience.

CRRA was amended by the Climate Act in 2019 to:

  • Expand the scope to include all permits subject to the Uniform Procedures Act and expanded consideration of all future climate hazards for applicable programs.
  • Require DEC to take actions to promote climate adaptation and resilience.

​Climate Change Regulations

6 NYCRR Part 496 Statewide Emissions Limits

  • Adopts statewide percentage emission reduction requirements from 1990 baseline, as set forth in the Climate Act, into tonnage limits based on carbon dioxide equivalents.
  • Visit the DEC 6 NYCRR Part 496 Statewide Emissions Limits page for more information.

6 NYCRR Part 494 Hydrofluorocarbon Standards and Reporting

  • Establishes prohibitions on listed hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) substances in certain end uses.
  • Prohibitions include the sale, offer for sale, installation, and commercial use of certain HFCs in new or retrofitted food refrigeration equipment, large air-conditioning equipment (or chillers), foams, and aerosol propellants.
  • Visit the DEC 6 NYCRR Part 494 Hydrofluorocarbon Standards and Reporting page for more information.

6 NYCRR Part 492 Climate Smart Community Projects

  • Clean vehicle and climate adaptation and mitigation project funding.
  • Financial rebates to municipalities that lease or purchase qualifying clean vehicles and funding for qualifying clean vehicle infrastructure.
  • Funding assistance for municipalities for climate change adaptation and mitigation projects including, natural resiliency measures, nature-based mitigation projects, relocation or retrofit of existing facilities due to flooding or sea level rise, and climate change adaptation planning and supporting studies.
  • Visit the DEC 6 NYCRR Part 492 Climate Smart Community Projects page for more information.

6 NYCRR Part 490 Projected Sea-Level Rise

  • Establishes official science-based sea level rise projections for New York State in accordance with CRRA requirements.
  • Includes projections for three specified geographic regions of New York State over various time intervals without imposing any requirements on any entity.
  • Visit the DEC 6 NYCRR Part 490 Projected Sea-Level Rise page for more information.

Other Climate Change Policies

Commissioner Policy 49 (CP-49) - Climate Change and DEC Action

  • First established in 2010, Commissioner Policy #49 (PDF) "Climate Change and DEC Action" (CP-49) provides guidance to DEC divisions, offices, and regions regarding the incorporation of climate change considerations into agency activities. Visit the DEC Climate Change Guidance Documents page for more information.

Value of Carbon Guidance

  • First established in 2022 for use by State entities to aid decision-making.
  • Demonstrates the global societal value of actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in line with the requirements of the Climate Act.
  • Appendix provides social cost values for carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and certain hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) at the 1 percent, 2 percent, and 3 percent discount rates.
  • Visit the DEC Climate Change Guidance Documents page for more information.

Community Risk and Resiliency Act (CRRA) Implementation Guidance

  • CRRA requires DEC, in consultation with the NYS Department of State, to prepare guidance on implementation of the statute.
  • Includes Using Natural Measures to Reduce the Risk of Flooding (PDF) to serve as a guide to selection and planning of actions that conserve, restore or mimic natural landforms and processes to reduce climate risks.
  • Includes State Flood Risk Management Guidance (SFRMG) (PDF) with recommended flood-risk management guideline elevations that incorporate possible future climate change flooding conditions and used to inform DEC regulatory programs and other state agencies as they develop program-specific guidance to require consideration of physical risks of climate change.
  • Includes Guidance for Smart Growth Public Infrastructure Assessment (PDF) to guide state agencies as they assess mitigation of sea level rise, storm surge and flooding in siting and design of public-infrastructure projects.

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  • Office of Climate Change
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    Albany, NY 12233
    518-402-8448
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