CEO Timothy Cawley Tells Shareholders Con Edison’s Clean Energy Commitment Is Our Path Forward To Sustainability
Con Edison CEO Timothy Cawley told shareholders in the company’s second virtual annual meeting that the company’s Clean Energy Commitment is “our way forward” and “will help our planet, our company, and our communities remain sustainable,” while also helping to spur the economy.
Cawley said the company faced the triple challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic, a national reckoning with systemic racism, and increasing effects of climate change in the past year, noting that Con Edison’s workforce remained steadfast addressing the company’s three priorities of safety, operational excellence, and providing customers with the best possible experience.
The Con Edison CEO said the company’s employees continue to innovate and remain focused on the customer by creating industry-changing technologies like in-home natural gas detectors, and by implementing improvements that include system-wide smart meter installations, enhanced digital processes, and easier rooftop-solar hook-ups.
Recognizing the broad, urgent need to do more to combat climate change, Cawley emphasized reimagining what’s possible through strong, continued focus on two paths: Reducing carbon emissions and making Con Edison’s energy systems more resilient against severe weather, citing a long-term climate resiliency plan (see report) that enhances how the company designs and operates its energy systems.
“We want to see 100 percent clean electricity by 2040,” Cawley told shareholders. “We’re investing in clean-energy solutions like battery storage. In 2020, we announced the largest battery storage project in New York history right here in Queens. We are the second-largest solar producer in North America and the seventh largest in the world (through Con Edison’s Clean Energy Businesses subsidiary, which has solar and wind generation projects in 20 states). We want to use that expertise to develop, own, and operate renewable generation right here in New York. At the same time, we are constructing electric transmission in the region and beyond. These projects are critical to a clean energy future.
“Then there’s electric vehicles,” Cawley continued. “We’re going all in. Can you imagine a world with only electric-powered vehicles? It’s coming. And we’re at the forefront of making it happen. We’re connecting thousands of new charging stations. And we’re taking action internally, too. We’re transitioning our light-duty fleet to electric. And our first electric bucket truck will hit the streets of New York next year.”
Cawley also said that Con Edison is spending more on programs that allow New Yorkers to make their homes and businesses more efficient, tripling the company’s energy efficiency investments to more than $1.5 billion by 2025.
The CEO acknowledged the contributions of all of the company’s employees, from the line workers and engineers on the streets to those working at home, also stating that company’s accomplishments happen with the “incredible support from our union leadership at Local 1-2, Local 3, and Local 503” who “have been exceptional partners throughout.”
Cawley also stressed continuing diversity efforts designed to ensure every employee feels valued, respected, and included, vowing to uncover and address any barriers to workplace equity while continuing to transform the corporate culture through ongoing dialogue and company training. He also said executive compensation will be tied to achieving diversity-goal results.
The company’s strength, credit rating, and tremendous stability, he added, were reflected by the 47th consecutive year of dividend growth, a 4-cent increase over 2020 to $3.10 a share, the longest streak of any energy company in the S&P 500.
Consolidated Edison, Inc. is one of the nation's largest investor-owned energy-delivery companies, with approximately $12 billion in annual revenues and $62 billion in assets. The company provides a wide range of energy-related products and services to its customers through the following subsidiaries: Consolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc. (CECONY), a regulated utility providing electric service in New York City and New York’s Westchester County, gas service in Manhattan, the Bronx, parts of Queens and parts of Westchester, and steam service in Manhattan; Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc. (O&R), a regulated utility serving customers in a 1,300-square-mile-area in southeastern New York State and northern New Jersey; Con Edison Clean Energy Businesses, Inc., the second-largest solar developer in the United States and the seventh-largest worldwide, which, through its subsidiaries develops, owns and operates renewable and sustainable energy infrastructure projects and provides energy-related products and services to wholesale and retail customers; and Con Edison Transmission, Inc., which falls primarily under the oversight of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and through its subsidiaries invests in electric transmission projects supporting its parent company’s effort to transition to clean, renewable energy. Con Edison Transmission manages, through joint ventures, both electric and gas assets while seeking to develop electric transmission projects that will bring clean, renewable electricity to customers, focusing on New York, New England, the Mid-Atlantic states and the Midwest.