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Tonko Clean Energy and Flood Control Priorities Advance out of House

Water Resources Development Act includes key initiatives for solar development & flood risk management

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WASHINGTON, DC—Congressman Paul D. Tonko cheered the overwhelmingly bipartisan House advance of priorities he authored under H.R. 7776, the Water Resources Development Act, legislation that approves dozens of feasibility studies for water resources development projects across the nation. One of Tonko’s priorities calls on the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to assess the potential to implement solar and floating solar technology at Corps sites across the nation, building off the success of the groundbreaking Cohoes Floating Solar Project.

“As we’ve seen with the innovative project in Cohoes, floating solar deployment offers a number of advantages in helping our nation reach its renewable energy goals and reducing power bills for families and communities,” Congressman Tonko said. “The advance of our Water Resources Development Act will help identify Army Corp sites where deployment of floating solar could be a feasible and cost-effective option. I call on the Senate to swiftly act on this important legislation so we can continue to make progress in meeting our clean energy goals, addressing climate change, and driving economic growth.”

Earlier this year, Tonko successfully delivered $3 million for the construction of a 3.2 megawatt floating solar array in the Cohoes reservoir as part of his FY2022 Community Project Funding requests.

The Water Resources Development Act also includes Tonko priorities to protect the Hudson and Mohawk River Basins and strengthen flood mitigation efforts. These include:

  • Recognizing the national significance of the New York-New Jersey Watershed by designating it as one of several priority regions for USACE watershed assessments. Rep. Tonko continues to fight for critical protections for this local watershed through his New York-New Jersey Watershed Protection Act.
  • Authorizing a feasibility study for projects in the Mohawk River Basin to improve flood risk management, restore threatened ecosystems, and ensure continued recreational opportunities.

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