Con Edison invests $1.3 billion to prepare power grid for heat, storms

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Consolidated Edison is investing $1.3 billion this year for summer reliability, upgrading its electric delivery system for New York City and Westchester County. The company is also in the second year of a four-year, $1 billion power grid fortification program to protect New Yorkers from the next major storm.

Con Edison's summer investments will help meet energy demand from new growth in its service area. Residential building permits are expected to rise 43 percent this year in the region. Additionally, New York City's population reached a record high of 8.4 million last year. There is also an increase in professional and business services, plus growth in the education, health, retail, and hospitality sectors.

Con Edison has invested at least $1 billion to prepare for summer each year since 2005.

System-wide transmission and distribution infrastructure improvements underway for summer 2014 include installation of 22 network transformers; three new major electric delivery feeders; 69 overhead transformers; reinforcement of 69 feeders, 49 underground sections, and 266 overhead spans, and the replacement of 11 miles of underground and aerial feeder cables with new electric lines.

Power supplies are sufficient to meet this summer's expected electric demand. The electric peak-demand forecast for this summer in Con Edison's service area is 13,675 MW. The record — 13,322 MW — was set on July 19, 2013 at 5 p.m.

An additional $230 million will be spent this year on storm-hardening projects. Cornerstones of Con Edison's four-year, $1 billion storm improvement plan for New York City and Westchester County include advancing smart grid designs to help reduce customer outages, building and installing protective barriers around critical equipment, and redesigning two underground electrical networks in lower Manhattan, and one in Brooklyn.

The storm-hardening plan, created in 2013 following Hurricane Sandy, will help better protect customers and equipment from extremely harsh weather events.

Con Edison's delivery rate remains virtually flat from last year; however, power supply prices, which the company does not control, are higher than last summer.

A typical New York City residential customer using 350 kWhrs per month, can expect average monthly summer bills to rise from $106.08 in 2013 to $112.41 this year, or 6 percent. A typical Westchester residential customer using 500 kWhrs per month, can expect average monthly summer bills to rise from $129.94 in 2013 to $139.66 this year, or 7.5 percent. A typical business customer using 10,800 kWhrs per month, can expect average summer bills to rise from $2,468.90 to $2,581.19, or 4.6 percent.

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September 2014
Volume 18, Issue 8

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