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Con Edison Completes Important Clean Energy Project in Queens

New Transmission Line Will Carry Clean Energy, Help Enable Shutdown of Fossil Fuel-Powered Plants

Con Edison has finished building a six-mile-long transmission line in Queens that will carry increasingly renewable electricity, enabling the retirement of inefficient, polluting power plants.

The completion of the line connecting a substation in Corona with one in Long Island City is a significant milestone in the region’s transition to clean energy. The line and associated substation upgrades support continued grid reliability, after the May 1 closure of a fossil fuel-fired power plant in Astoria that was formerly owned by NRG Energy.

The line is one of three Reliable Clean City projects that Con Edison began in 2021 to help enable the retirement of fossil fuel power plants in the city. The closure of those plants will reduce carbon emissions and co-pollutants and move the state closer to meeting the environmental goals in its Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA).

The NRG plant and others that will close are “peaker plants” that operate mainly at times when the demand for power is high. These plants tend to be older and less efficient, meaning their emissions are disproportionately higher when they operate. Residents of nearby disadvantaged communities tend to suffer the greatest health effects.

“Today marks a significant step forward in providing the infrastructure to reliably deliver clean energy to our customers while enabling the closure of inefficient, fossil fuel- burning peaker plants,” said Tim Cawley, the chairman and CEO of Con Edison. “As we make clear in our Clean Energy Commitment, we are strong supporters of New York’s climate goals and we’re committed to building a grid that can carry 100 percent clean energy by 2040. I want to thank Governor Hochul and New York State Public Service Commission Chair Rory Christian for their leadership on this critical issue as well as the dedicated women and men of Con Edison for completing this important project on time and under budget.”

"As we continue our efforts to combat climate change, upgrading New York's transmission system to deliver clean energy across the state is a top priority," Governor Kathy Hochul said. "With this critical new transmission line, we are enhancing and upgrading New York City's electric grid and enabling the continued development of renewable energy."

“New York City has the dirtiest grid in the state, and we must shift to clean, renewable energy to ensure a just transition to a low-carbon future,” said NYC Comptroller Brad Lander. “To do so, we first need to invest in our power grid. The Queens Reliable Clean City project is a critical component toward greening our electricity supply, retiring polluting peaker plants, and meeting our ambitious climate goals.”

“Queens is done with the days of disinvestment in our health — both the health of our families and the health of our environment. There is no mission more critical than our transformation into a borough run on renewable energy, and Con Edison’s Reliable Clean City Project represents a significant step toward that goal,” said Queens Borough President Donovan Richards Jr. “I look forward to working with Con Edison and all of our partners to ensure that Queens becomes a global leader in the fight against climate change and environmental injustice.”

“It is imperative that we replace polluting fossil fuel energy with clean, green renewable energy and Con Edison’s Reliable Clean City project supports that effort,” said James F. Gennaro, New York City Council member and chair of the Council’s Committee on Environmental Protection. “Renewable energy will yield tremendous benefits to local communities in terms of improved air quality and will benefit our fight against climate change. As Con Edison celebrates 200 years, this is a prime example of the company leading the renewable energy transformation.”

“Con Edison’s Reliable Clean City project will help us build the energy infrastructure needed to deliver a clean, reliable and resilient electric grid for all New Yorkers,” said New York City Chief Climate Officer and Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Rohit T. Aggarwala. “As more peaker plants are retired we create cleaner air and better health, especially for those living near the plants.”

“Public health and environmental justice must be front and center as we transition our infrastructure to deliver a clean and renewable energy future,” said Mayor’s Office of Climate & Environmental Justice Executive Director Kizzy Charles-Guzman. “This is the type of project the city is looking to support in our forthcoming PowerUp NYC report.”

Con Edison is also building Reliable Clean City transmission projects in Brooklyn and Staten Island. Those projects also require substation upgrades. The work is on schedule to finish in 2025.

The Queens line will be able to carry 300 megawatts of power. In total, the Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island lines will add 900 megawatts of transmission capacity across New York City. That is important because Con Edison expects the region’s need for electricity to increase as building owners turn away from fossil fuels and more drivers adopt electric vehicles.

Increasing amounts of that power will be clean energy as the state adds to its portfolio of renewable generation, including 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind mandated by the CLCPA by 2035.

The work in Queens accounts for $275 million of the $800 million Con Edison is investing in the Reliable Clean City projects.

“We are proud to support upgrades to the system that will ensure reliable clean power for our city that is staffed by a workforce of dedicated professionals such as the people who make up Local 1-2 of the Utility Workers Union of America,” said James Shillitto, the president of the local. “Our members are proud to apply their skills, talents, and knowledge to ensuring that our region remains safe and sustainable.”

“Generations of New Yorkers will enjoy a cleaner environment and continued reliable service, thanks to the work of Con Edison’s great unionized workforce on this project,” said Christopher Erikson, the business manager of IBEW Local 3. “Our members look forward with pride to the completion of Reliable Clean City projects in Brooklyn and Staten Island, which will mark additional steps toward a future with clean air and good public health, particularly for those in disadvantaged communities.”

“We need reliable renewable energy more than ever as New Yorkers electrify buildings and adopt electric vehicles,” said Julie Tighe, president of the New York League of Conservation Voters. “While New York is taking steps to generate enough clean energy to supply the state in line with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act timeline, New York City needs increased transmission capability to bring renewable energy from outside the city to our homes and businesses. Con Edison recognizes that climate change is a harsh reality and that we need dramatic action to keep our city and planet safe and sustainable.”

“The Long Island City Partnership congratulates Con Edison for completing this transformative, new transmission line in Queens, on time and on budget,” said Laura Rothrock, president of the partnership. Long Island City has grown five times faster than the rest of New York City in the past decade. “As the neighborhood development organization for Long Island City, we welcome Con Edison’s investment in our rapidly growing community to ensure that our city can run on clean, renewable energy for years to come.”

The Reliable Clean City projects are among the many steps Con Edison is taking to lower carbon emissions, support environmental goals and create a clean energy future while maintaining high reliability. The company works with customers to help them use less energy and is incenting building electrification and the installation of EV chargers.

The company has helped customers connect 55,000 solar projects that have the capacity to produce 500 megawatts of clean, renewable energy.

The New York State Public Service Commission recently approved the company’s Brooklyn Clean Energy Hub project, which will support grid reliability while connecting new resources to New York City.

Con Edison wants to do even more to lead the clean energy transition. The company is seeking approval to own large-scale solar and wind farms in New York State. Utility ownership of these resources would be in the best interests of customers because Con Edison can operate the facilities more efficiently and less expensively than private developers.

Con Edison is a subsidiary of Consolidated Edison, Inc. [NYSE: ED], one of the nation’s largest investor-owned energy companies, with approximately $16 billion in annual revenues and $69 billion in assets as of December 31, 2022. The utility delivers electricity, natural gas and steam, and serves 3.5 million customers in New York City and Westchester County. For financial, operations and customer service information, visit For energy efficiency information, visit Also, visit us on Twitter and Facebook