* Transmission upgrades, costing $500 million, recommended
* Approval needed by April to be ready in 2016-filing
HOUSTON Feb 1 A combination of transmission,
generation and energy conservation measures will be needed to
maintain electric service in New York City if the Indian Point
nuclear plant is forced to close, Consolidated Edison Inc
said in a regulatory filing made on Friday.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo wants to shut the two
reactors at Indian Point when their operating licenses expire in
2013 and 2015 because of the plant's proximity to the New York
metro area, home to some 19 million people.
The 2,063-MW Indian Point station, located 40 miles (60 km)
north of Manhattan, supplies about a quarter of the Big Apple's
Con Edison has warned that early retirement of the nuclear
facility "without sufficient alternatives, would threaten
electric reliability and potentially raise electric market
prices" in New York City.
After Hurricane Sandy left millions of New Yorkers without
power last year, the New York Public Service Commission (PSC)
called on Con Edison and state-owned New York Power Authority
(NYPA) to develop contingency plans in case the Indian Point
reactors shut when the units' licenses expire.
On Friday, Con Edison and NYPA proposed a package of three
transmission upgrades costing more than $500 million, which they
said need regulatory approval as soon as April to move forward
so they can meet the city's power needs by mid-2016.
"The plan consists of several integrated components, all of
which need to be timely approved so that they can move forward
according to the schedule," Con Edison said in the filing.
In addition, the companies asked regulators to act as early
as March on a separate plan to solicit additional generation and
transmission projects that can be in operation by the 2016
Con Edison also wants to expand its demand-response program
by 100 megawatts to curb power use when the power grid is
The transmission projects that Con Edison said are needed
include a 345-kilovolt transmission line costing $123 million;
projects to relieve grid congestion on Staten Island costing
$311 million; and replacement of transmission conductors costing
Friday's filing gave few specifics on the amount of new
generation that might be needed in the proposed solicitation.
Executives with NRG Energy said this week that their
efforts to modernize several power plants could bolster the New
York power supply in the event the Indian Point reactors are
New Orleans-based Entergy Corp, which owns Indian
Point, maintains the plant is safe and is seeking to extend the
reactors' federal operating licenses for another 20 years.