Buffalo, NY (January 16, 2020): Today the New York Public Service Commission ordered New York’s utilities to meet increased energy efficiency targets in the New Efficiency: New York proceeding. As part of the order, for the first time, the energy savings resulting from customers who switch from fossil fuel heating to heat pumps will be included toward energy efficiency goals. Heat pump technology provides space heating and cooling without burning fossil fuels, using an electric pump to efficiently concentrate and harvest heat naturally found in the air and underground. The Commission’s order specifically requires New York’s utilities to deliver 3.6 TBtus of energy savings from heat pump installations across the state. While NY-GEO had urged the Commission to maintain as a minimum its original target of 5 TBtu’s, the adopted target will provide support for tens of thousands of installations over the next 5 years as heat pumps replace fossil fuel heating in New York.
As part of this order, responsibility for incentivizing heat pumps will be transferred to the utilities from the NYS Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA). Clean heating and cooling advocates from across the state have been anticipating this move and have asked for strong incentives so home owners and businesses can afford to make this transition.
In response to the PSC’s order NY-GEO Executive Director Bill Nowak stated: “We believe the Commission’s order marks the official beginning of a process that will lead to the eventual end of fossil fuel heating in New York. With heat pump technology there is no longer a need to be burning gas, oil or propane to heat our homes and businesses. New York will not meet its climate goals without drastically cutting the substantial percentage of emissions from fossil fuel heating. Today’s order is an important step in that direction”
The New York Geothermal Energy Organization (NY-GEO) is a non-profit trade association representing geothermal heat pump (GHP) installers, manufacturers, distributors and industry stakeholders from throughout New York State.