Across the country, policymakers are considering ways to protect housing and other critical infrastructure from our changing climate that threatens to disrupt how and where we live. Governor Cuomo has signed legislation to create a net-zero carbon economy by 2050. This ambitious plan will transform New York’s economy and present new opportunities for development in the Empire State.
It is important to consider the impact of a changing climate on the built environment. At our Annual Upstate Housing Conference last month, the New York State Association for Affordable Housing (NYSAFAH) highlighted what the industry is already doing and how it can work with the Cuomo administration to create affordable housing stock that achieves high standards of efficiency and resilience.
While those new standards are among the most ambitious in the nation and can seem imposing to affordable housing professionals, the reality is the affordable housing industry in New York State is already leading the way. Rochester, the host of our annual conference this year, is an example of what is already being accomplished.
Consider the City’s Sustainable Homes Rochester initiative, which offers financial assistance to residents who use energy efficient products. This creative use of city funds is helping to reduce emissions. The Rochester development community is also playing an important role at projects like the Long Pond Senior Housing development, where water and energy consumption has been made more efficient for 54 low-income senior households.
Similar projects and initiatives are underway not only in Rochester but across New York State. Our industry stands ready to replicate these efforts and improve upon them by working with policymakers and other key stakeholders to make New York a national leader in combatting climate change and providing safe and affordable homes to hardworking families.
This collaborative spirit will help deliver the affordable housing outcomes that New Yorkers need and deserve.