To the Editor,
Jim Roberts’ piece [“Keeping the Lights on with the Green New Deal,” May 2020] regarding New York’s energy options in the post-Indian Point world incorrectly implies that the New York Independent System Operator [NYISO] says new natural gas-powered plants such as CPV [Competitive Power Ventures and Cricket Valley are needed to keep the grid reliable going forward.
In fact, NYISO — which coordinates the distribution of our electricity supply — says that New York will have enough replacement power to replace the aging, unsafe nuclear plant’s output without building these and other new gas-fired power plants.
REPLACING REACTOR 2
In the last three years alone, enough clean energy and efficiency has been installed to replace the recently closed Reactor 2 [at Indian Point].
Also, we’ve already made considerable progress toward replacing all of Indian Point’s power — once the last reactor closes in April 2021 — with demand reduction, additional transmission and new renewables, and we are continually making more at an ever faster pace.
NYISO’s forecasts for subsequent years show even greater promise because increasing clean energy initiatives continue to be the foundation of New York’s efforts to combat climate change.
Not only are no new gas plants needed, existing gas plants will rapidly come under pressure to close as the green transformation of New York’s power grid ramps up.
Meanwhile, we shouldn’t forget that Indian Point is neither safe, clean, nor green. The plant has had troubling issues with the degradation of the bolts that hold the inner walls of the reactors together; numerous emergency shutdowns and close calls in recent years; and no viable evacuation plan.
The pools that house spent nuclear fuel have leaked toxic, radioactive water into the ground, contaminating the local groundwater and the Hudson River. Finally, Indian Point’s antiquated once-through water cooling system kills over one billion fish and fish larvae each year as it withdraws more than 2 billion gallons per day from the Hudson.
Legal Program Director