Capital New York:
Councilman Donovan Richards wants the city to turn out the lights.
In legislation that will be introduced today, Richards will seek to limit the number of lights kept on in commercial buildings at night. The bill has a series of exceptions for security reasons, seasonal displays and occupancy.
But Richards, chairman of the Council's environmental protection committee, said the millions of lights kept on in the city that never sleeps are wasting energy and exacerbating a global emissions crisis.
"The primary focus of the Lights Out Bill is energy conservation," Richards said in an email to Capital. "With a focus on unnecessary lighting, particularly in non-residential, retail and other similarly used buildings, this is an integral part of the effort to reduce carbon emissions city-wide."
That effort—an 80 percent reduction in city emissions by 2050—will require deep cuts in the city's buildings emissions, which account for up to 80 percent of New York's carbon profile.