Today we’re releasing our priorities as part of our 2019-2020 City Policy Agenda. We’re focusing on Combating Climate Change and Protecting People & Natural Resources, including initiatives related to energy and infrastructure, transportation, resiliency, solid waste, lead poisoning prevention, clean air, clean water, sustainable food, parks, and active waterfronts.
Over the last year, Mayor de Blasio and the City Council took bold steps towards meeting ambitious climate goals with new standards to reduce emissions from buildings – the city’s #1 contributor to climate change – and the largest increase in funding for City parks in over twenty years. But there is more work to do implement these standards, green our transportation sector, conserve our natural areas, and significantly reduce our waste to effectively fight climate change.
The agenda will drive our advocacy and programs as we push for budget appropriations and legislation. It will also guide the bills we select for both our 2019 and 2020 New York City Council Environmental Scorecards.
Our top priorities include:
Common Sense Waste Management: To reduce waste, the City must invest in a massive public education campaign around recycling and organics collection, advance a mandatory residential organics program, avoid the use of unnecessary disposable items, and follow through on commercial waste zones.
Encouraging Mode Shift to High Efficiency, Low Emission Forms of Transportation: Moving New Yorkers out of single-occupancy vehicles via improved and efficient public transit, bike, scooter, and other micro-mobility programs are all part of the solution for a greener transportation sector. It is equally important that the City take a comprehensive citywide approach to reimagine streetspace, so that there is adequate infrastructure in place to meet the growth in sustainable transportation. As with any other major transition, the administration must lead the way by reducing the size of the City’s fleet and more aggressively transitioning the remainder of the fleet to zero-emissions.
Conserving New York City’s Natural Areas: It is imperative that the City invest in the health and sustainability of the canopy both in parks and natural forested areas to ensure this valuable resource is there to benefit New Yorkers for generations to come.
The agenda was developed working in consultation with our environmental, public health, transportation, and environmental justice partners to identify and advocate for solutions to New York City’s most pressing environmental issues.
We look forward to working with Mayor de Blasio, Speaker Johnson, and City Council to champion these policies.