Maybe that’s why Cuomo is shifting from a goal of “50 by 30” — having half New York’s power come from renewables by 2030 — to a “70 by 30” benchmark: He figures greens can be fooled by talk.
Never mind that the state has yet to meet the 30 percent target it set back in 2010, which it was supposed to reach four years ago.
Nor that the feds are phasing out their subsidies for wind and solar, making it even harder (and more expensive) for those industries to grow.
Nor that communities across the state are nixing proposals for giant wind and solar “farms” — which has forced the governor to push for offshore wind farms, the most expensive single way to generate electricity.
In fact, most of New York’s “renewable” energy comes from hydropower, which is tough to scale up. Plus, alternative energy faces a growing transmission problem: You have to get the electricity to the customers, which means major new power lines to connect new solar and wind plants to the grid.
Oh, and the same forces that fight new power plants “in my back yard,” also stand in the way of new power lines.
Not to mention that wind and solar don’t reliably generate electricity at the times of peak demand — which means you need carbon-based backup plants or you’re going to have blackouts.
Final problem: Thanks to Cuomo, the two Indian Point nuclear plants are to shut down this year and next. That will knock a giant hole in the state’s non-fossil-fuel electricity generation, and most of the replacement power is sure to come from gas and oil plants.
No wonder the gov keeps talking about his goals for 2030: Even with a fourth term, he’ll be out of office when his failure becomes unmistakable.