August 8, 2020 Read More →

Green New Deal sets up fight over future power needs of nation’s largest city

Huffington Post:

A chain-link fence runs along 20th Avenue through northwest Queens. To the South are blocks of brick multifamily homes, where grandmothers tend fig trees in verdant front yards and proud immigrant parents celebrate high school graduations with gaudy banners hung from balconies. North of the fence, power plants burn the oil and natural gas that feeds New York City’s insatiable thirst for electricity.

That fence is about to become a battle line in the fight over the city’s energy future. 

One of the companies on the complex, NRG Energy, has quietly revived plans to replace its 50-year-old oil-burning generators with new gas-fired units, part of a $1.5 billion makeover the utility giant says will allow it to comply with state pollution rules while meeting electricity demand. 

New York is aiming to build 1,500 megawatts of battery storage by 2025 as part of its efforts to adhere to a major new climate law passed last year. The legislation, known as the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, or CLCPA, mandated that New York generate 100% of its electricity from carbon-free sources by 2040. Meanwhile, battery technologies “have been proven and prices have come down,” said Dennis Wamsted, an analyst at the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis. 

“You could make a very good argument that we should be replacing the oil-fired peakers and most of the gas ones with storage,” Wamsted said by phone. “It is totally within the realm of possibility to make it happen.”

[Alexander Kaufman]

More: New York City’s Hottest New Energy Fight

Posted in: IEEFA In the News

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