New York Regional Interconnect, Inc. (NYRI) is seeking approval from the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) to build, at no cost to taxpayers, a 190-mi-long transmission line to meet the state's growing demand for reliable and reasonably priced electrical power.
As part of the state's regulatory process, NYRI submitted a Supplemental Filing to the PSC that augments NYRI's original Article VII filing made in May 2006.
In response to requests from the PSC, NYRI submitted to the Commission a Supplemental Filing that details research findings on the economic and environmental impacts of NYRI's proposed transmission line, as well as alternative routing options. The new filing supplements NYRI's original Article VII application submitted in May 2006. The filing indicates that the transmission line would result in lower wholesale electricity pricing across the state.
The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), the U.S. Department of Energy and the private sector have documented the critical need for upgrading transmission in this corridor to relieve system congestion and increase reliability. Without new transmission, and even with conservation measures, the region risks potentially devastating blackouts and brownouts that would impact individuals, businesses, hospitals, schools -- virtually every aspect of modern life.
"New, efficient transmission lines would improve the reliability of the transmission system, providing safe and reliable power while protecting our national security," said Chris Thompson, president of New York Regional Interconnect, Inc. "NYRI will be the first major transmission upgrade from upstate to downstate New York in more than 20 years."
The new studies contained in NYRI's Supplemental Filing indicate important economic benefits to New York State, which currently has the third highest rates in the U.S., behind Alaska and Hawaii. As reported by NYRI's independent consultant, Charles River Associates (CRA), NYRI would lower wholesale electricity costs throughout New York State. The report states that NYRI "is likely to reduce electricity costs for the State of New York in a number of significant ways: it will reduce prices and the cost of energy to New York consumers, it will reduce the production cost of electricity thereby improving economic efficiency and improving social welfare, and it will reduce the cost of congestion."
Studies of alternative transmission line routes, which NYRI recently outlined in public notices appearing in community newspapers, are described in more detail in NYRI's Supplemental Filing. These options include installing the line underground in certain areas and adjusting the originally proposed route to completely bypass other areas. The PSC ultimately determines the final route.