Working with Westchester Customers on Alternatives to Natural Gas & New Solicitation for Smart Solutions
Con Edison is committed to helping our customers meet their heating and cooking needs as New York transitions away from fossil fuels, including helping customers in the portion of Westchester County where there is a moratorium on new gas connections.
Our Smart Solutions program, providing customers with incentives for energy efficiency and cleaner alternatives to natural gas, already has led about 30 Westchester County customers to choose geothermal heat pump technology for heating their homes. Our heat pump offerings to customers are likely to grow significantly in 2020, through additional incentive funding we have requested from our state regulators. Click here (https://bcove.video/2Qk9pE5) for an example of a Westchester resident who installed a geothermal system.
In the next month, we expect to issue a second Smart Solutions Request for Information (RFI) to secure additional innovative solutions to reduce reliance on natural gas and continue building on the success we have achieved thus far. The RFI represents a continuation of Con Edison’s efforts to:
- proactively seek any new and innovative solutions to reduce reliance on gas and further alleviate gas supply constraints;
- decisively support and advance electrification and clean energy goals of both New York State, as envisioned under the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, and New York City and Westchester County, as adopted under local climate legislation; and
- support our customers, including those in low- and moderate-income communities, by providing them with clean alternatives so they can reduce their reliance on fossil fuels for their energy needs.
The RFI also will promote decarbonization of the natural gas grid by soliciting proposals for additional renewable natural gas and testing the potential role of hydrogen in further reducing the carbon footprint of our gas distribution system.
We’ve provided customers with whom we interact in the moratorium area, and throughout our service area, with information on non-fossil fueled energy alternatives, and discussed demand reduction opportunities with our largest firm gas customers. We also will launch a district energy study and associated pilots exploring geothermal loops in lieu of natural gas infrastructure. If the study shows promising results, the Company will test the concept of heating an entire neighborhood with clean geothermal energy.
These are some of the many steps Con Edison is taking to lead New York State and New York City into the clean energy future.
In the meantime, we also are working to address ongoing customer demand for natural gas through agreements for increased compression on existing interstate gas transmission pipelines, as well as the use of compressed natural gas at various storage sites.
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