- Empire State Connector has filed with federal regulators for authority to construct a merchant transmission cable below the Erie Canal and Hudson River that would bring renewable energy to New York City, RTO Insider reports.
- The company told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission it would foot the entire $1.5 billion needed to construct the project, and requested a decision before July.
- The project could help New York meet ambitious renewable goals by accessing far-flung renewable generation, according to the company's CEO.
RTO Insider reports on a new transmission project that would connect upstate New York renewable generation will customers in New York City. The 1,000 MW project would run from Utica, N.Y., to a converter station in either the Bronx or Brooklyn – a 260-mile route that would run almost entirely underwater or underground.
In a statement, Empire State Connector CEO John Douglas said the project's “strategic location and innovative, low-impact route will ‘unlock’ upstate renewable and zero-emission generators, helping New York state achieve its ambitious goal of 50% renewable generation by 2030."
"The world is taking notice how serious New York is about climate change and economic development," Douglas said.
The company said the line would be constructed under a Project Labor Agreement using New York State construction workers and labor unions affiliated with the New York State Building Trades, and would use environmentally-sensitive equipment and techniques. Assurances and benefits to the state are helping it garner support from lawmakers.
"The Empire State Connector project is an especially welcome proposal that I will be following closely," said Sen. Joe Griffo, "because it promises to have very low environmental impact and virtually no visual impact, and would facilitate the transmission – from upstate to downstate – of ultra-clean and zero carbon emitting electricity, which is generated right here in New York."
Empire State Connector has filed with FERC and requested a decision by June 24. The company said it assumes the full market risk for the $1.5 billion construction cost, "resulting in no negative impact on ratepayers."