Both houses of the legislature approved separate bills related to tax benefits for installing solar panels and green roofs in New York City. The state’s “net metering” program, allowing those with wind-powered generating systems to provide energy back into the grid and get a credit against their own usage, will be expanded to include commercial customers. Stiffer “block the box” penalties have been enacted to help ease New York City gridlock. Additionally, construction of the Gansevoort waste-transfer station, in the works for more than three years, will finally move forward under an agreement between the city and the legislature.
Green Canopy in the Urban Jungle
Of the two tax-abatement provisions, it seems likely that the one rewarding installation of a green roof may get more takers at the moment. “Relatively speaking, if you have an appropriate roof, it’s easy to put on a green roof,” attorney Caroline Harris tells Real Estate New York. “And there are multiple benefits to doing so,” as compared to the solar panel, which only generates one benefit, albeit a substantial one: producing energy.
For optimal results, Harris says, green roofs should be installed “on all of the buildings in the neighborhood, to reduce the temperature on a neighborhood-wide basis. That would be fantastic for the environment.” Naturally, this would require somebody taking the lead after installing a green roof: organizing his or her fellow property owners to follow the example. “Community boards would be a good place for people to publicize green roofs and maybe get activities going on a community-wide basis.”
The Daily News has more.