Trash wars: The zone awakens – Politico

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Quick Fix

— The annual conference for Multiple Intervenors, a coalition of large energy consumers, kicks off at The Jerry, also called the Albany Capital Center, at 9 a.m. PSC Chairman John Rhodes, NYPA’s Sarah Salati, IPPNY’s Gavin Donohue and NYISO’s Rich Dewey are all speaking.

— Assemblywoman Sandy Galef, Sen. Peter Harckham, and Westchester County Legislator Catherine Borgia attend a regional forum on decommissioning nuclear power plants in the Northeast organized by Hudson River Sloop Clearwater at 1 p.m., Hendrick Hudson Free Library, 185 Kings Ferry Rd., Montrose.

— Renewable natural gas boosters hold an awards event and Sen. Todd Kaminsky is scheduled to speak, 6:30 p.m. at the Ramscale Studio Penthouse (13th Floor) at 463 West Street, Manhattan.

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Driving the Day

TRASH WARS: THE ZONE AWAKENS — POLITICO’s Danielle Muoio: An effort to fundamentally change how commercial waste is picked up and processed in New York City may be heading toward approval with newly drafted legislation that is set to be released Thursday. The latest bill, details of which were described to POLITICO, represents an apparent deal between labor groups, some industry players, the City Council and the mayor’s office in a fight that has played out in the streets and the chambers of City Hall for six years. If passed, the measure represents the most significant reform of the city’s commercial waste industry since a city-led commission began removing organized crime from the industry in the 1990s. Council Member Antonio Reynoso, chairman of the Committee on Sanitation and Solid Waste, told POLITICO the latest version includes several key changes from the original bill floated earlier this year. It advances what is known as a non-exclusive zoning model — dividing the city into sections in which a maximum of three waste companies can operate — and creates incentives to switch to more sustainable vehicles and haul trash to more reputable waste transfer stations.

MURPHY OPPOSES MEADOWLANDS PLANT — POLITICO’s Sam Maldonado: Gov. Phil Murphy on Wednesday voiced his opposition to a proposed power plant to be built in New Jersey’s Meadowlands to feed electricity into New York City. Murphy declared his stance on the North Bergen Liberty Generating Plant on On WBGO’s show “Ask Governor Murphy,” saying he had “kind of come to an epiphany.” “I’ve come to the point that I’ve deferred on this long enough that I have to say definitively this project simply doesn’t make sense for New Jersey,” Murphy said. “I just can’t find the justification for building a power plant in the Meadowlands and increasing emissions.”

OPERATION MAPLE LEAF: NEW YORK SUES U.S.-CANADIAN PANEL — POLITICO’s Marie J. French: Gov. Andrew Cuomo is moving forward with his effort to sue a board created by a U.S.-Canadian treaty over its management of lake levels that he says led to flooding along the Lake Ontario shoreline in New York. The flooding from record lake levels in 2017 and 2019 came after the implementation by the International Joint Commission of a new management scheme known as Plan 2014. Cuomo, local officials and residents have blamed that plan and the IJC for the flooding. “They have failed to manage the lake level,” Cuomo said at an event in Rochester announcing the complaint, which has not yet been filed and was not provided by either the governor’s office or the attorney general.

— “State officials are hanging their hat on a U.S. Supreme Court decision earlier this year that found international organizations should not always be protected from litigation,” reports Rochester Democrat and Chronicle’s Steve Orr. “In that case, the court ruled 7-1 that citizens in India should be able to seek damages from the International Finance Corp., which loaned money for construction of a plant that caused significant environmental damage. State officials believe that decision would allow New York to pursue a negligence claim.”

NEWARK LEAD FINANCE IMPACT — POLITICO’s Sam Sutton: Newark’s financial profile remains unchanged even after taking on $120 million of debt to expedite the replacement of lead service lines at roughly 18,000 homes across the city over the next three years, according to a report from Moody’s Investors Service.

Around New York

— PIPELINE WATCH: National Grid executive Keith Rooney “thinks the [Northeast Supply Enhancement] pipeline will get the go-ahead in the next few weeks,” reports Crain’s Greg David.

— A Binghamton University professor, M. Stanley Whittingham, was awarded the Nobel prize for chemistry for his pioneering research that led to the development of the lithium-ion battery.

— An attorney for the South Fork Wind Farm canceled a planned settlement meeting on the project that was to have taken place on Tuesday in Albany. At the meeting, the company was reportedly going to offer a third alternative site to bring the power ashore, reports the Indy East End.

— LETTER: Environmental groups, businesses and others are urging Cuomo to sign a measure to legalize e-bikes and e-scooters.

— Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand visited Stewart Air National Guard Base in Newburgh to be briefed on issues including the installation of a temporary filtration system at the base to address water contamination.

— Environmental groups opposed to the state’s multi-billion subsidy from ratepayers to prop up nuclear plants upstate have lost another round in state Supreme Court in Albany.

— BLOG: NRDC’s Bruce Ho offers some insights from the latest RGGI investment report.

— After some targeted negotiations with Invenergy, parent company of the Number Three Wind Farm, the Lewis County Industrial Development Agency was able to secure an increase to the standard PILOT.

— A state Supreme Court judge continued to put the brakes on the state’s plan to build a bridge over the Cedar River, which would connect Indian Lake and Minerva.

— Another solar company has its eye on Moreau’s expanse of vacant space for a project that would essentially max out National Grid’s local substation.

— DEC is investigating a broken pipe at Finch Paper that leaked about 2 million gallons of paper waste into the Hudson River late last month.

— ADK communities along Route 73 are bracing for a busy hiking weekend over Columbus Day.

— The $25 million Capitol Gondola project will start moving into an environmental review when the Rensselaer Planning Commission approves an agreement with Albany next Tuesday to take charge of the project over the Hudson River.

— The committee that controls Niagara County’s Greenway cash on Tuesday approved $175,000 to remove and replace 280 diseased and dying ash trees in Niagara Falls parks along the Niagara River and Gill and Cayuga creeks

— A Princeton University professor and two Swiss scientists won the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics on Tuesday for their work in understanding how the universe has evolved from the Big Bang and for discovering the first known planet outside our solar system.

Across the River

— New Jersey has revamped a controversial proposal to fund new solar projects, but the changes may not go far enough to quash developers’ concerns that the new incentives could disrupt a good portion of the sector.

It won’t be a classic nor’easter or a tropical storm, but the atmosphere is primed to erase sand from New Jersey’s beaches with a siege of prolonged winds and pounding waves that is expected to lap well into Saturday, forecasters say.

— A Wawa parking lot on Route 33 in Howell will become the site of eight Tesla charging spaces.

— OPINION: New Jersey’s proud birds of prey are a resilient bunch, yet we humans must do our part.

— Elevated levels of lead were found in the water at seven out of 29 Newark schools where tests were conducted since August 2018, according to newly revealed district data.

— New Jersey Resources appointed John Bremner, former president of Flagship Energy Consulting in Houston, as vice president of NJR Midstream.


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