Record Solar Energy Helps Con Edison Meet Demand During Heat Waves
- Aug 24, 2022 9:07 pm GMT
The air conditioners keeping customers comfortable in New York City and Westchester during recent summer heat waves were powered in part by record levels of solar generating capacity in Con Edison’s service area.
Con Edison customers installed more than 4,000 solar electric systems in the first half of this year, totaling nearly 40 megawatts of generating capacity, according to the company’s quarterly Clean Energy Update.
That lifts customer-owned solar capacity on Con Edison’s grid to a record 436 megawatts spread across 47,000 individual systems, helping to meet growing demand for clean energy in the nation’s largest city.
“Every day more of our customers are embracing the benefits of solar systems, electric vehicles and chargers, and other clean energy technologies,” said Vicki Kuo, Con Edison’s senior vice president for customer energy solutions. “Con Edison is building a reliable, resilient and dynamic smart grid that will integrate these customer-owned resources alongside large amounts of new renewable power, helping drive New York toward its clean energy future.”
Queens remains New York City’s hottest solar market followed by Staten Island, with more than 25,000 customer-owned solar systems now generating power in those two boroughs.
Solar energy lowers customer bills, brings green jobs to local communities, and helps offset electric generation that would otherwise come largely from burning fossil fuels.
Locally sited solar projects will play a role in reducing strain on the grid as rising temperatures increase demand for air conditioning. Brooklyn and Queens set a new record for electric demand during peak hours this summer.
The latest Clean Energy Update also highlights the recent rapid growth of electric vehicles and chargers in the region. There are now more than 35,000 electric vehicles registered in Con Edison’s service area, an increase of nearly 5,900 vehicles since the beginning of the year. Those EVs rely on Con Edison’s electric grid for energy.
Since its launch last year, Con Edison’s PowerReady incentive program has supported the installation of 600 Level 2 and DC Fast-Charge plugs for EVs, with 40 percent of those plugs installed in the past three months alone. Con Edison plans to support the installation of approximately 19,000 charge plugs by 2025.
Clean energy markets received a major boost from the Inflation Reduction Act that was recently signed into law. This historic legislation will lower the cost of rooftop solar, EVs, batteries, electric heat pumps and other technologies for customers, further catalyzing New York’s shift toward cleaner sources of energy.
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