New York Metropolis’s Local weather Insurance policies May Make Life Even Extra ‘Unaffordable’ For the Center Class • Watts Up With That?

From the Daily Caller



New York City is moving forward with several climate policies which are likely to make everyday life even more costly for the middle class in one of the country’s most expensive cities.

The city is aiming to slash its greenhouse gas emissions by 80% come 2050, push a sweeping building electrification mandate known as Local Law 97 and impose an automobile traffic congestion fee, each of which will increase the costs of living or working in the nation’s largest city, especially for the middle class, energy and New York policy experts told the Daily Caller News Foundation. Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan each already rank within the 15 most expensive places to live in the U.S., according to an analysis conducted by CNBC.

“The city is wealthy because, somewhere out there, people are producing energy, food, clothing and so on, and people are trading all of that in New York,” Dan Kish, a senior fellow for the Institute for Energy Research, told the DCNF. The city’s emissions target “will make things more expensive and drive people away to places like Florida,” he added. (RELATED: This Populous Blue State Has A Green Energy Mandate. Experts Say It Threatens Grid Reliability)

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That flight of capital would shrink the tax base, thereby straining the city’s finances further, Kish told the DCNF. “People without the means, working people, do not have the opportunity to just pack up and leave,” Kish told the DCNF. “But it’s easy if you’re Mike Bloomberg.”

Local Law 97, meanwhile, is poised to impose emissions standards that approximately 50,000 buildings in New York City will have to meet starting in 2024, with additional restrictions imposed starting in 2030, according to The New York Times.

Some buildings are easier to retrofit with the appropriate wiring and equipment necessary to comply than others, and a large share of the high costs incurred by landlords and building owners for coming into compliance will almost certainly be passed on to residents, Jane Menton, a mother who lives in a Queens co-op and has led a grassroots effort to fight against Local Law 97, told the DCNF.

“Progressives in Queens, Manhattan and Brooklyn are so afraid to go against the narrative that this rule is a climate solution… but it’s unaffordable to convert buildings to electric so they won’t convert to comply with the rule, they will just pay fines which will then allow the city to use the money to plug gaps in the budget,” Menton told the DCNF. “The same politicians and advocates who claim to care about the city’s working class wrote a law that will push them out of their homes… functionally, this law is just a carbon tax on the middle class.”

Notably, other cities, such as Boston, have pushed for similar building electrification policies to fight climate change, and the Biden administration has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to help state and municipal governments pursue policies that “decarbonize” buildings as well.

The New York City congestion pricing tax is promulgated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), which is technically not an agency operating under the auspices of the municipal government.

Congestion pricing is meant to reduce emissions and air pollution by charging drivers fees to enter certain sections of the city. Specifically, the MTA has proposed to charge passenger cars $15 and trucks as much as $36 to be able to enter a large swath of Manhattan, according to local outlet NBC 4.

However, the proposal may not significantly reduce the amount of traffic that piles up on the city’s roadways, potentially even increasing the amount of congestion in areas like the Bronx, according to the New York Post. Qualifying low-income drivers who register with the appropriate authorities could also receive a 50% discount on the charges after their first ten trips into the relevant area of Manhattan, according to local digital news outlet

“Congestion pricing should be viewed primarily as a revenue action to cover the MTA’s indefensibly high capital costs,” Ken Girardin, director of research for the Empire Center, a New York-focused think tank, told the DCNF. “As to congestion itself, policymakers have declined to do basic things like enforce parking rules or dial back the parking permits given to public employees or other policy changes that would take cars off lower Manhattan roads because those aren’t things you can borrow money against.”

The policy would also make life more expensive for people who do not live in the city but make the commute each day to go to work, according to Politico. Notably, politicians in London, the U.K’s largest metropolis, have attempted a similar scheme, which Republican New York City Councilman Joseph Borelli of Staten Island described as “a complete disaster” and an “abject failure” when discussing New York’s forthcoming version of the scheme in January.

“If all of New York state went ‘net-zero’ today, United Nations climate modeling indicates that a mere 0.0023° F of global warming would be avoided by 2050. That is far from measurable, much less significant. So nothing would be accomplished,” Steve Milloy, a senior legal fellow for the Energy and Environment Legal Institute, told the DCNF. Businesses will stay in NYC and play along with the climate agenda, including high taxes, as long as costs can be passed on to locals. When profitability stops, businesses will leave… The costs of the climate agenda are regressive. Poorer people will feel them first.”

The offices of Democratic New York City Mayor Eric Adams and the MTA did not respond immediately to the DCNF’s request for comment.

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