Sustainable Development, Climate Change and Land Use for Local Governments
New York Zoning Law and Practice Report, Vol. 11, No. 2, September/October 2010
12 Pages Posted: 12 Oct 2010 Last revised: 5 Dec 2014
Date Written: October 1, 2010
Over the last two years a number of state level initiatives in New York have been announced and enacted to address sustainable development and climate change. For example, Governor Paterson issued a series of executive orders: requiring a new State Energy Plan (which was adopted in December 2008); setting a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by the year 2050 and calling for the creation of a climate action plan (the draft plan is scheduled for release for public comment in November 2010; and creating an interagency committee on sustainability and green procurement. In addition, he signed into law a number of new programs including: the Green Residential Building Grant Program, the Green Jobs – Green New York Program, the Municipal Sustainable Energy Loan Act, and improvements to net metering. While these and other State-level programs are vital to achieving emissions reductions goals and promoting sustainable communities, New York’s cities, towns, and villages have also been at work trying to develop and implement strategies to curb emissions. Municipalities are choosing to adopt clear statements and action items in their comprehensive land use plans, and they are creating climate change or sustainability task forces and developing strategies. Local governments are also enacting regulations to promote green building and alternative energy development. This article introduces the ways in which local governments have taken the lead in mitigating and preparing for climate change, focusing on the manner in which local governments have incorporated climate change concerns into the local land development regime.
Keywords: LEED, climate change, sustainable development, land use, zoning, green development, green buildings, solar, renewable energy, wind power, wind energy, energy policy
JEL Classification: K11, K32
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation