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Pizzerias and bakeries impacted by NYC emission regulations


New York City has approved a new green plan that seeks to cut emissions of coal and wood-fired stoves by 75%.

This law, passed under Mayor Eric Adams’ Department of Environmental Protection, requires restaurants with wood and coal-fired stoves to install an emission control system. The new law, set to take effect on April 27, will impact many individuals and businesses alike.

Overall, this new regulation will affect about 130 businesses within the city and will be costly.

“This is an egregious overstep of the state and local government and puts an unreasonable burden on small businesses that have already endured tremendous hardships over the last 3 years,” Marc Hellman commented under a forum discussing this new law.

The cost of the new regulation is dependent on many factors, but businesses may have to cough up $20,000 to $600,000, as reported by the New York Post. On the other hand, supporters of the new law, like Eric Goldstein, New York City Environment Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council, argue for its benefits.

“New York has had among the worst air pollution in the country and part of the reason why air quality has improved is because sensible laws have been passed,” Goldstein said. “These scrubbers have been around for decades.”

Goldstein added that legislators are “not at war with pizza.” The law is not meant to target any particular business but meant to improve the city’s health.

NYC has long fought a crusade for a better environment and as one of the most densely populated cities in the world, it has proceeded to face that challenge with many different policies. Most famously and easily visible, is the massive tree planning strategy. In fact, as of June 2023, nearly 15,000 trees were planted across the city.

NYC has long focused on transforming itself into an urban forest. These trees cool the surrounding area, clean the air and absorb rainwater. The city even introduced a “mini forest” to Roosevelt Island in April.

Another way that the city has faced the environmental problem is by pushing for alternative modes of transportation, such as furthering bike lane construction, and new methods of delivering goods to the densely populated Manhattan. An up and coming delivery method is the use of electric bikes which can deliver items similar to how trucks can.

“Building a more sustainable city means reimagining deliveries in New York City,” Adams said.

This program was piloted between 2019 and 2022 and led to 650,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions to be reduced—“the equivalent of emissions generated by 1.6 billion miles driven by an average gas-powered passenger vehicle.”

“Achieving a safer and greener transportation future includes reducing the number of large, high-polluting trucks on our streets,” New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Ydanis Rodríguez said. “Authorizing these new delivery options will better protect our environment and all road users.”

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