In fiscal year 2010-2011, the New York State Energy Research Development Authority spent $413.9 million statewide on various energy programs, most of which are focused on encouraging consumer energy conservation and green energy use.1
In that same time period, the Authority was provided with funding of $289.9 million through a “system benefit” charge paid by gas and electric customers. On a typical bill, that charge is 2 percent for electricity customers and 1 percent for natural gas customers.2
The program is relatively efficient. It is estimated that, for every dollar spent by the authority, consumers taking advantage of the benefit save $2.70 in energy bills. In 2011, fossil fuel reductions that resulted from the authority’s programs reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 3.7 million tons, which is the equivalent of taking 744,000 cars off the road.3
Since New York consumers pay for these programs by the additional charge on their gas and electric bills, they should take advantage of them. The details of renewable and energy conservation incentives in New York are available here.