Rhinebeck City Council pledges support for state’s plan to reduce fossil fuel use in new construction – Daily Freeman

RHINEBECK, NY – City Council members pledged to support state goals to eliminate fossil fuel-based energy sources in new buildings, reduce local greenhouse gas emissions by 40% over the next eight years and to obtain 100% of electrical energy from renewable energies. source by 2040.

The aspirations were outlined in a videoconference meeting on Monday, with Village Trustee Vanessa Bertozzi saying the resolution is meant to motivate municipalities to take advantage of programs that help developers and owners improve the energy efficiency of buildings.

“It’s definitely very aggressive,” she said.

“The truth is that the technology exists to have new fossil-free constructions,” Bertozzi said. “Obviously, the renovation of our very old building stock is more difficult.”

The resolution is intended to support changes in state law and does not require municipalities to revise local codes until new rules are adopted.

State officials have sought public comment on a proposed scoping plan that calls for “moving to energy-efficient electrification in buildings and transportation as the primary solution to replacing fossil fuel combustion.”

The state’s plan hopes to achieve the goals by revising building codes to require a high-efficiency energy system in new buildings, with the goal of reducing both energy consumption and costs to consumers.

However, in the city, members of the resolution council removed language that members considered unrealistic in attempting to define the period for phasing in code updates by 2027.

“I almost feel honor bound to abstain if we let this because I think it’s a business that we know we won’t be able to honor,” Councilman Chauncy Walker said.

Bertozzi said the state’s proposed scoping plan would be a significant benefit for people looking to upgrade heating systems, with officials expected to increase incentives for existing rebates on new equipment.

“Most people live in existing homes…with an existing furnace that is going to collapse at some point in the years to come,” she said.

“What you want is to be able to upgrade it and take advantage of the discounts,” Bertozzi said. “There are already tax rebates and incentives for people to make these conversions. What we’re looking forward to is that they come up with the scoping plan (for) that they increase those discounts so that those changes for pre-existing homes are more profitable.