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Cover for Rapid Research and Assessment on COVID-19

Rapid Research and Assessment on COVID-19 and Climate in New York City

In May 2020, the New York City (NYC) Mayor’s Office of Climate Resiliency (MOCR)began convening bi-weekly discussions, called the Rapid Research and Assessment (RRA)Series, between City staff and external experts in science, policy, design, engineering,communications, and planning. The goal was to rapidly develop authoritative, actionableinformation to help integrate resiliency into the City’s COVID response efforts. […]

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Reforming CEQR: Improving Mitigation Under the City Environmental Quality Review Process

The City Environmental Quality Review (CEQR) is the process by which agencies in the City of New York evaluate their discretionary actions for environmental effects. As an extension of the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA), it imposes a substantive mandate on agencies to “act and choose alternatives” which minimize or avoid significant […]

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Dec. 12, 2019 – Reforming City Environmental Quality Review: Improving Mitigation

On December 5th, the Guarini Center, in collaboration with the Municipal Arts Society and the Regional Plan Association held a roundtable meeting with experts from across New York City to examine opportunities for reforming City Environmental Quality Review. This workshop was generously supported by the New York Community Trust. The results of the roundtable meeting […]

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A Review of Green Roof Laws & Policies

 There are a number of reasons to install a green roof in an urban setting. Green roofs can help with stormwater retention, mitigate the urban heat island effect, enhance biodiversity, improve local air quality, and reduce building energy usage. The myriad benefits provided make green roofs an attractive tool for cities seeking to improve their […]

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Do Mandatory Energy Audits Reduce Building Energy Use?: A Bayesian Analysis of New York City’s Local Law 87

Cities are experimenting with a range of policy and regulatory tools to reduce energy use in the building sector as a pathway to substantial carbon emission reductions. Increasingly, cities are turning to policies that reduce information asymmetries and knowledge gaps through data transparency, focusing on existing buildings and the potential to achieve up to 50% […]

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Expanding Green Roofs in New York City: Towards a Location-Specific Tax Incentive

Vegetated, or “green,” roofs provide numerous social and environmental benefits to urban areas. Compared with conventional roofs, green roofs promote biodiversity, reduce building energy use, decrease noise, and improve the productivity of solar photovoltaic installations. They can also mitigate the urban heat island effect and reduce stormwater runoff, thereby diminishing flooding and pollution of local waterways. […]

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Water for Nukes: Could Canadian Hydropower Keep New York’s Emissions in Check After Indian Point?

The planned closure of the Indian Point nuclear facility, which currently supplies about 25 percent of New York City’s electricity, could cause a substantial rise in greenhouse emissions and local air pollution if concerted action is not taken to secure alternative clean energy resources for the City. In this Policy Brief, Guarini Center Energy Law […]

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Linking Across Borders: Opportunities and Obstacles for a Joint Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative-Western Climate Initiative Market

Despite the strong consensus in the scientific community that anthropogenic climate change requires urgent attention, neither the United States nor Canada has implemented a comprehensive national policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  Into this void have stepped two regional cap-and-trade programs that regulate greenhouse gas emissions in parts of both countries.  One, the Regional Greenhouse […]