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Question of the Day: How much should New York City's Concerns Influence Decisions Regarding Indian Point?

Shutting down Indian Point would lead to dirtier air and higher electric bills for NYC, new study shows.

The New York Times reported yesterday that a new study has found that shutting down the Indian Point nuclear power plant would lead to dirtier air and higher electric bills for New York City residents.

New York City commissioned Charles River Associates to produce the report, which commissioner of the city’s Department of Environmental Protection, Caswell F. Holloway, says was not to support an argument not to close IPEC, but to explore implications of a shut down. The Times reports:

“For the next several years, there probably will not be enough new power generated to replace the 2,000 megawatts produced by the two reactors at Indian Point. That shortfall could leave the city with a less reliable supply of electricity and a greater risk of brownouts, the report finds.”

Here are the major points highlighted in the article:

-If Indian Point closed, the wholesale cost of energy would rise by ten percent. This would mean five to ten percent increases in your electric bill.

-Mayor Michael Bloomberg says that IPEC probably can’t be shut down for four to five years because there are no alternative resources available until then.

-The findings have not deterred Governor Andrew Cuomo’s determination to close the power plant.

-IPEC produces as much as 25 percent of New York City and Westchester’s power.

-IPEC is up for license renewal in 2013 and 2015.

-There are three projects currently in the works that could replace IPEC’s energy, but they would not provide enough energy to meet reliability standards for New York City.

- Closing IPEC would reduce the possibility of NYC significantly reducing its carbon emissions according to Bloombergs long-term PlaNYC initative. The study estimates

“that the amount of carbon emissions and nitrogen oxides in the air in the city and state would increase by at least 5 percent to 10 percent because replacing Indian Point’s output would require more fuel-burning plants. If none of the lost power was replaced by renewable sources of energy, like wind farms, the increase in carbon emissions could be as high as 15 percent, the report states.”

Here is the full New York Times article, “Dirtier Air and Higher Costs Possible if Indian Point Closes, Report Says.”

Paul Serophene July 09, 2011 at 12:52 PM
NYC's concerns are Westchester's concerns. Share the game grid, breathe the same air, pay the same electric bills. Difference is, you close the plant, Hendrick Hudson School District goes bankrupt, more than $50 mil in tax revenue evaporates, and thousands of local residents see their livelihoods upended - and for no good reason. Finally, take a look at what Bill Gates had to say about the debate we are having today. Fact is that nuclear plants like Indian Point are safe reliable and effective. Read more at: http://www.wired.com/magazine/2011/06/mf_qagates/
Barbara LoPrete July 09, 2011 at 12:54 PM
All of that pales when you think about what would happen if there were a nuclear accident or attack at the plant. I agree with Gov Cuomo - for the safety of millions, Indian Point must be shut down.
Earl July 09, 2011 at 06:34 PM
Brilliant, lets increase pollution, decrease grid reliability, and destroy local economies because of what "might" happen- get to work on the alternatives and when it's proven they'll work- then it's time to shut it down.

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