National Grid should stay in 21st century
Well, so much for the argument that natural gas is more affordable than renewable energy that National Grid has been pushing in the company’s bid to slow New York’s transition to clean, renewable energy [“Heating cost jump,” News, Sept. 7].
On top of last year’s fossil gas jump of 25%, National Grid customers can expect another 29% leap this year.
Wind and solar don’t have “fuel” price spikes. And even if the price of electricity is also going up — due to “volatile gas markets” — my monthly electric bill of $15 will likely increase by mere cents. That’s because rooftop solar panels produce all the power I need, including charging my electric vehicle. I just pay a grid hookup fee.
Onshore wind and solar are now the cheapest form of new energy generation, costing less to build than gas or nuclear power.
It’s time for National Grid to stop trying to drag us back to the so-over 20th century. Gov. Kathy Hochul needs to endorse a strong Final Scoping Plan from the state Climate Action Council to put New York on a firm path in achieving our climate and energy goals.
— Francesca Rheannon, East Hampton
The writer co-chairs the Long Island chapter of the Climate Reality Project.
Ever since New York’s Climate Action Council released its Draft Scoping Plan, National Grid’s lobbyists and executives have been frantically circling legislative offices in Albany, showing up at hearings, and writing op-eds — with their argument of an energy “affordability and reliability” crisis if the state adopted the plan’s recommendation of switching from polluting fossil fuels to energy-sipping heat pumps for thermal comfort.
It was abundantly clear that National Grid’s fearmongering was in the service of its core business model of building and maintaining fossil fuel infrastructure at the ratepayers’ expense.
Now, with the second consecutive year of heating price increases in the mid- to-high-20 percentage for customers of its fossil gas, which is prone to supply shocks, National Grid’s tale is unraveling.
Long Island customers’ heating bills will continue to surge in tandem with the surging U.S. exports of liquified natural gas to keep up with Europe’s insatiable demand for it.
Hopefully, Albany will back a strong Final Scoping Plan that not only meets New York’s climate goals but also kick-starts a transition to home heating with affordable and reliable renewable electricity.
— Stuart Braman, Port Washington
The writer, who founded a climate-focused research firm, volunteers with the LI regional team of Renewable Heat Now.
Ever since legislation was introduced in Albany to electrify new construction, fossil fuel interests have been working overtime to find every argument to support the continuation of gas.
You will read about an affordability and reliability crisis if the state mandates new buildings to provide heating and cooling (not to mention hot water) through heat pumps, whether air-sourced or geothermal.
Even in East Hampton, when a recommendation from the town’s Energy Sustainability and Resiliency Committee to electrify all new construction — residential and commercial — was made this summer, National Grid immediately appeared to promote “natural renewable gas” and “green hydrogen.” And, although the Long Island Power Authority fully embraces expanded electrification, you will hear a good deal about the infrastructure being unable to handle more demand.
This is the second year of National Grid’s price increases and unlikely to be the last. We need the stability of truly clean energy flowing through the electrical grid (now close to 50%, including nuclear) in ever larger percentages. Then we need to expand our use of that energy by electrifying our homes.
Albany should throw its weight behind the movement to electrify everything and support the growth of wind, solar and hydropower.
— Lena Tabori, East Hampton
The writer is a former chair of East Hampton Town’s Energy Sustainability and Resiliency Committee.
Serena Williams is an inspiration
Serena Williams at the U.S. Open was a Cinderella story that displays America’s possibility [“Defining her legacy,” News, Sept. 4]. Her determination, talent and grace along with her peak-performance longevity was met with a shower of applause by the public. It was well deserved and well received.
The game of life has its share of volleys and serves with errors, like tennis itself.
Williams is forever an inspiration on and off the court with her capabilities, grit and pureness.
— Steven Taub, Melville
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