Dec. 15--The nonprofit that manages New York's power grid concludes in a new report that the nearly built Competitive Power Ventures plant in Wawayanda and two other projects will supply more than enough electricity to meet regional demand after the Indian Point nuclear plant closes.
The report by the New York Independent System Operator studied the impact of deactivating Indian Point's two reactors in 2020 and 2021 on energy reliability in the Hudson Valley, and the additional power that would come from the CPV plant, the planned Cricket Valley Energy Center in Dutchess County and a plant expansion in Bayonne, N.J. It found that without those three new sources, the region would need 100 megawatts of additional generating capacity to meet demand by 2021 and 600 megawatts of added power by 2026.
Either new plant in Orange and Dutchess counties could meet that future shortfall on its own. According to the report, CPV will generate 678 megawatts, Cricket Valley will generate 1,020 megawatts, and the expansion of the Bayonne plant is expected to add 120 megawatts of capacity.
Reactions to the report were mixed.
Tom Rumsey, a senior vice president for external affairs at CPV, called it "an indisputable validation of the need for the CPV Valley Energy Center," and urged state officials to stop their legal battle with federal regulators over the 7.8-mile gas pipeline that must be built to fuel the $900 million plant.
"In light of this report, we hope the state will carefully consider the value of this project for New York, its energy customers and the environment, and discontinue its opposition to a critical component of our project, the Millennium lateral pipeline," Rumsey said in a statement on Thursday.
Riverkeeper, the environmental group that advocated closing Indian Point, applauded the report's conclusion that the state's energy system will remain reliable after the Westchester County nuclear plant is decommissioned. But it faulted the five-page study for looking only at gas-fired generators as replacement sources, and not at increased energy efficiency and renewable energy.
"New York can rely predominantly on energy efficiency, battery storage, wind and solar resources to replace Indian Point's power if the appropriate policies are in place," Riverkeeper President Paul Gallay said in a statement.
A federal appeals court in Manhattan lifted a stay last week to let Millennium Pipeline begin building its gas line across Minisink and Wawayanda to the CPV plant, a project that is expected to take around six months. The court is hearing a dispute between the state Department of Environmental Conservation and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about a pipeline permit that the DEC denied in August. FERC overruled that denial, arguing that the DEC missed its 12-month deadline to decide.
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