The stage is set for a battle royale within the New York Democratic Party over climate policy. Governor Hochul has suddenly realized that the cost of the state’s planned emission reduction scheme will be “extraordinary,” and is challenging her own party to make the climate law less damaging to New Yorkers’ pocketbooks. Will the left wing of her party go along?

In this year’s budget negotiations Ms. Hochul and the legislature agreed to a cap-and-invest program as recommended by the state’s Climate Action Council. Cap-and-invest programs put an annual limit on the amount of greenhouse gas emissions New York businesses collectively emit, with the amount declining each year. Businesses will have to bid for an ever-decreasing number of permits and naturally will pass the costs on to consumers by raising prices.

But a wrinkle in the Climate Act will make those costs more than half as much as they would be under Hochul’s proposed change. [Continue reading on]

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