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Mark Ruffalo and the New York Solar Jobs Act: Making a Big, Green Difference in New York

Mark Ruffalo -- the Hulk -- roars about the New York Solar Jobs ActUPDATE: 6/28/12: From VoteSolar.com: “The New York legislature shut its doors for 2012 without passing the Solar Jobs Act or any long-term solar program. Although the Empire State missed a tremendous opportunity for solar power, we gained a tremendous amount of people power. We diversified and strengthened our solar coalition, highlighted real solar jobs in communities up and down the state, showed a super majority of voter support, and partnered with actor Mark Ruffalo to add his star power to the cause. Altogether, tens of thousands of New Yorkers spoke up for solar. The Hulk aside, that’s a lot of muscle. And Albany heard us. While they didn’t pass big, bold solar policy this year, the legislature did pass important smaller provisions that will make solar more affordable for people in New York City and for people who participate in popular third-party solar financing arrangements all across the state. And through it all, Governor Cuomo reaffirmed his commitment to making New York a solar leader–first with his New York Sun Initiative and then his proposal to extend this program out through 2022.Vote Solar isn’t stopping. This summer we’ll be building on what we’ve started together here. We want you to continue building with us.

A few weeks ago, still giddy from the excitement of seeing The Avengers in 3D IMAX, we shared our thoughts on how the underlying Avengers plot was ripe with themes of renewable energy… The arc reactor. Te Tessaract cube, capable of providing for humanity’s needs of clean, renewable energy indefinitely. Even Loki, the mischievous god who sparks much-needed change.

Maybe we weren’t the only ones who saw the parallels between Iron Man’s arc reactor on the Stark Enterprises building and renewable energy in New York today. Or maybe we were.

But Mark Ruffalo, who starred as the Avengers’ Hulk, definitely sees the logic in making New York a leader in solar power. And who better to promote solar energy than a big, green superhero?

Ruffalo, who is a native of Wisconsin but achieved his big acting break on the New York stage and now lives with his wife and children in upstate New York, recently recorded a clip discussing the importance of the New York Solar Jobs Act. In the video, the actor drew on a transparent whiteboard, reminiscent of something his movie alter ego Bruce Banner might do, as he explained, “New York State enjoys 200 days of energy-producing sun a year. The cool thing is, even on cloudy days like today, we can still harvest energy from the sun.”

He goes on to say, “Albany needs to pass the Solar Jobs Bill to help kick-start this job-producing energy source. There’s no reason that New York State couldn’t be the leader in solar energy production.”

New York and New Jersey have had a friendly rivalry to become the solar leader on the Eastern seaboard for the past few years. New York lags behind Jersey, which is number two in the country behind California, and the New York Solar Jobs Act could make a big difference in closing the gap.

Take a minute (literally just a minute) to watch Mark Ruffalo’s video, and then another 30 seconds to ask your New York legislators to vote for the New York Solar Jobs Act. We only have a few weeks left to make a BIG difference.

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A full-time freelance writer, Dawn frequently covers energy efficiency, green living, and topics like LED lighting and whole home control systems for a number of blogs and technology trade magazines. Dawn is proud to live in New York as the state vies to beat out New Jersey as the East coast top dog of solar energy and is waiting for the Solar Renewable Energy Certificate legislation to pass before installing solar panels on her Long Island home.

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