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Letter: LIPA rate hike will help prevent emissions

PSEG and LIPA towers along a power line

PSEG and LIPA towers along a power line in Commack on Dec. 2, 2014. Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.

The Sept. 22 news story “Nuke plant subsidy to hike LIPA’s bills” fails to mention the benefits that all New York residents, including those on Long Island, receive as a result of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s Clean Energy Standard.

New York residents benefit both from energy from nuclear plants, as well as from the state’s bold initiatives to fight climate change. The Clean Energy Standard requires that 50 percent of the state’s electricity come from renewable sources in a strategy to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2030. It is a model for the country. The benefits outweigh the costs to achieve our shared climate objectives.

It’s puzzling that the Long Island newspaper of record skipped mentioning the benefits of reduced carbon emissions that result from keeping nuclear plants open. Long Island residents understand more than most the damage of sea levels rising because of climate change.

For less than $2 a month on the average residential bill, Long Island residents join hands with the rest of New York to prevent an increase of 15 million tons of carbon dioxide being dumped into the air, along with other greenhouse gas emissions. That’s a small price to pay to protect our most precious assets on Long Island — its people and environment.

Audrey Zibelman, Albany

Editor’s note: The writer is the chair of the state Public Service Commission, which oversees public utilities.