Con Ed Natural Gas Moratorium / by Norris McDonald

Two weeks ago, Consolidated Edison announced that come March 15 it would impose a natural gas moratorium in most of its Westchester service area, a move the utility said was prompted by increased customer demand and a shortage of new pipelines.

Real estate developers fear the plan could put the brakes on economic development, especially in struggling downtown areas in the southern part of the county where several multi-million dollar projects are in the works.

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New Rochelle and other cities in Westchester County are undergoing a historic process of renewal, and delay can often produce more than just delay, it can be the death knell of a project that might be enormously positive for a community.

In reports dating back to 2017, ConEd warned state regulators of the chance of a moratorium. It cited customers who were moving away from home heating oil in favor of natural gas and the state’s reluctance to approve new natural gas pipelines.

The Cuomo Administration has established a number of clean energy goals for the coming decades, including relying on renewables like wind and solar power for a greater share of the state’s energy needs. (LoHud, 2/4/2019)