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Rise Light & Power to Transform Former Coal-Fired Power Plant into Clean Energy Hub, Connecting Offshore Wind to New Jersey's Electric Grid

  • Sep 17, 2021 8:46 am GMT
  • 211 views
Source: 
PR Newswire

SOUTH AMBOY, N.J., Sept. 17, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Rise Light & Power, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the LS Power group, today announced plans for an innovative new renewable energy hub to deliver New Jersey's tremendous offshore wind resource to the state's electric grid in an environmentally-responsible, efficient, and affordable way.

Rise is proposing to build the Outerbridge Renewable Connector, a new solution to streamline the delivery of renewable offshore wind energy to New Jersey homes and businesses. Rise recently completed acquisition of the site of the former E.H. Werner Power Station in South Amboy, New Jersey, and plans to redevelop the site as a renewable energy hub serving as a central interconnection point for offshore wind farms to deliver clean energy to the New Jersey electric grid. With Rise's ongoing remediation efforts, the project will also lead to the elimination of a once-contaminated brownfield site dating back to the 1930s.

The acquisition of the former Werner coal plant continues Rise's mission to transform aging energy infrastructure into hubs of clean energy. Rise is currently advancing the clean energy transformation of New York City's largest power plant, the Ravenswood Generating Station, to host several green infrastructure projects, including battery storage and renewable transmission solutions.

Today, after months of consultations with elected leaders, policymakers, offshore wind developers, environmental advocates, labor, business, fishing interests, and other stakeholders, Rise submitted to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) and PJM Interconnection the innovative Outerbridge Renewable Connector plan.

"Rise Light & Power is committed to helping New Jersey achieve its ambitious clean energy goals," said Clint Plummer, CEO of Rise Light & Power. "The state's bold vision calls for a responsible, affordable solution to delivering offshore wind energy to the state electric grid. Outerbridge solves the challenge of finding appropriate and acceptable cable landing sites by using existing infrastructure that avoids siting transmission lines in sensitive areas like residential neighborhoods and recreational beaches."

"Governor Murphy positioned New Jersey as a leader in transitioning to clean energy and we are proud to play an integral part in his goal for the state to obtain 50 percent of its power from clean sources by 2030," said South Amboy Mayor Fred Henry, who supports the project. "The Outerbridge Renewable Connector is the only project in our state that can deliver clean offshore wind to our residents without the controversy of disturbing beaches and communities. Outerbridge is also a major economic generator for South Amboy that will create good-paying local jobs and support our community as a major taxpayer. This is the kind of partner and project South Amboy is proud to endorse."

The Outerbridge proposal is a superior solution for delivering offshore wind energy to New Jersey electric customers because it enables offshore wind projects to avoid bringing high voltage power cables ashore at New Jersey's beaches or other sensitive areas.

Instead, Rise proposes transforming an industrial waterfront site, formerly home to the Jersey Central Power & Light Company's E.H. Werner power station, into an ideal gateway for bringing power from offshore wind farms into New Jersey. 

The 26-acre, industrially-zoned site was retired as a fossil-fueled power plant in 2015. The site on Raritan Bay features an existing substation and switchyard, rail and highway access, a pier with expansion potential and unobstructed access to the Atlantic Ocean with 24 acres of submerged lands.

Once offshore wind energy is delivered to the new clean energy hub at South Amboy, Outerbridge would function as a giant extension cord, delivering clean energy to the local power grid through upgraded grid infrastructure on the site and to the Deans Substation through buried cables along an existing railroad right of way. The power cables will be entirely underground. A proposed battery energy-storage system offers the opportunity for further reliability to the grid.

In repurposing the past to power the future, Outerbridge will be a valuable part of the South Amboy waterfront, creating good-paying union jobs during construction. 

Outerbridge would generate power for up to 1.4 million homes and create over $1 billion in economic value to New Jersey, including nearly $88 million in tax revenue for state and local governments. In addition, Rise is committed to fund and implement programs to build the local economy and support workforce development. Outerbridge would accomplish this while minimizing costs and controversy and building confidence in New Jersey's offshore wind systems.

"New Jersey has a nation-leading offshore wind program," said Joe Esteves and David Nanus, the Co-Heads of Private Equity at LS Power. "Our Outerbridge proposal allows the state to achieve its offshore wind goals on schedule, cost-effectively and with the highest possible levels of public support. And it will demonstrate how a legacy power plant site can be transformed into a hub of clean energy."

The Outerbridge Project presents the NJ BPU with:

  • Ideal location — the site of the retired E.H. Werner Power Station on Raritan Bay
  • Zoned for industrial use — no recreational beaches, residential communities, or Wildlife Management Areas would be disturbed
  • Direct access to state and regional power grid through a substation onsite and access to others via an existing railroad right of way
  • Low-impact, environmentally-responsible route alignment with no above-ground transmission facilities or road construction required between the South Amboy location
  • A Battery Energy Storage System that will help facilitate New Jersey's transition to clean energy and improve reliability of the PJM system

Rise is committed to extensive, ongoing communication with residents, local officials, labor, business, environmental advocates, environmental justice organizations, fishing industry and other stakeholders to seek input and guidance during development of the project.

About Rise Light & Power

Rise Light & Power is a regional energy asset manager and developer based in Queens, New York-based. Its core asset, Long Island City's Ravenswood Generation Station, is New York City's largest power generating facility, providing more than 20 percent of New York City's generation capacity. Rise is also pursuing an exciting growth-oriented strategy, including modernization and resiliency upgrades at Ravenswood, as well as new large-scale clean energy infrastructure to facilitate the renewable energy transition taking place in the New York and New Jersey region. Rise Light & Power is a wholly owned affiliate of LS Power. For more information, please visit www.riselight.com.

About LS Power  

LS Power is a development, investment, and operating company focused on the North American power energy infrastructure sector. Since its inception in 1990, LS Power has developed, constructed, managed, or acquired more than 45,000 MW of power generation, including utility-scale solar, wind, hydro, natural gas-fired, and battery energy storage projects. 

LS Power's New York efforts beyond Rise Light & Power include LS Power Grid New York, a nearly 100-mile transmission upgrade project from Marcy to New Scotland which will support the delivery of clean energy, create jobs and hardens the line against extreme weather. LS Power Grid New York was selected by the New York Independent System Operator as the most efficient and cost-effective solution in New York's largest competitive transmission project to date, for which construction is underway. 

Additionally, LS Power has a long standing commitment to New Jersey, where it opened its office in East Brunswick in 1997, and owns and operates multiple generation facilities, including the Yards Creek Pumped Storage Hydro project, the Mars Solar project and the West Deptford Energy Station. Additionally, LS Power's New Jersey operations include Silver Run Electric, which secured the first major competitive transmission award in the eastern United States, and was praised by PJM for its "greater cost certainty with fewer exclusions" than other prospective developers. Silver Run was completed on time and below budget in June 2020.

For more information on these and other projects, as well as LS Power's energy transition companies CPower Energy Management, Endurant Energy and EVgo, please visit www.lspower.com

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SOURCE Rise Light & Power

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