In total, the 62 projects will create 3.5GW of capacity for clean energy, including wind power, and are slated for completion between 2024 and 2030.
The projects - to be carried out by Central Hudson Gas & Electric, NYSEG, National Grid and RG&E - include upgrades to existing transmission lines and substations, and construction of three new substations.
The lack of transmission capacity in upstate New York negatively impacts residents by increasing costs and curtailing generation, according to the Public Service Commission (PSC).
‘Smart and cost-effective’
PSC chair Rory M. Christian said there was a need to address congestion in parts of the state “where renewable energy is already bottled” and new developments are likely. The state’s investment in transmission and distribution had to be “smart and cost-effective”, he added.
The $4.4 billion estimated cost of the transmission upgrades will leverage at least $1 billion in direct benefits to New York companies and localities, and avoid billions in excess payments to renewable power producers, according to the PSC.
Beyond climate mitigation, which benefits all New Yorkers, these projects will also bring hundreds of high-paying construction jobs and significant tax payments to local municipalities, the commission added.
New York State targets 9GW of offshore wind by 2035 on the path to achieving a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040. It aims for 70% renewable energy generation by 2030, and economy-wide carbon neutrality by 2050.
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