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Emissions are down and electricity prices have hit historic lows in the New York Independent System Operator’s (NYISO) markets, CEO Richard Dewey told reporters at a press conference on Wednesday. However, achieving the state’s long-term emissions goals will require the use of new technology, he said.

Multiple transmission projects, some already under construction, will improve New York’s ability to move wind and solar energy from the northwest of the state to population centers in the southeast, Dewey said. But wind and solar alone cannot satisfy the state’s projected demand long-term, he said.

Dewey said NYISO is currently focused on evening out the distribution of renewable energy in the state. The majority of the state’s renewable capacity is located in upstate New York, where 90% of the energy produced in 2020 was free of carbon emissions. Downstate New York, on the other hand, produced 77% of its energy in 2020 from fossil fuels. New transmission projects, including nearly $1.4 billion in upgrades currently under construction, will transfer renewable energy generated in the north and west to the population centers of New York City and Long Island, Dewey said.

[Emma Penrod]

More: NYISO head eyes new technologies to reach zero emissions, saying renewables and storage not enough

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