With the new Susquehanna-Roseland transmission line now entirely operational, Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G), New Jersey's largest utility, is fully equipped to meet customer demand for safe, reliable electricity this summer.
The 500-kilovolt line was fully energized today by PPL Electric Utilities from the Susquehanna station in Berwick, Pa., to PSE&G's Hopatcong switching station. PSE&G energized the portion of the line from Hopatcong to its Roseland switching station in April 2014. PSE&G has spent more than $775 million on the project to date. The PJM Interconnection, the regional grid operator, determined that Susquehanna-Roseland was needed to maintain reliability by relieving congestion on other regional transmission lines.
PSE&G constructed 45 miles of the line in New Jersey and PPL built the 101-mile Pennsylvania portion. The two companies worked together to build a four-mile segment through National Park Service lands along the borders of the two states.
"In addition to maintaining electric capacity and reliability, the energizing of this line marks the completion of a major project that has created thousands of New Jersey jobs and has benefitted the state's economy," said Kim Hanemann, senior vice president of delivery projects and construction for PSE&G. "We could not have completed this critical project without the cooperative relationship between PSE&G and PPL. Working together, we successfully navigated the lengthy permitting and licensing process at both the state and federal levels. The S-R line is one of a number of substantial infrastructure upgrades we are making to keep the lights on and New Jersey's residents cool when temperatures climb."
PSE&G customers are benefiting from $2.6 billion in electric and gas investments the utility is making this year. Equipment has been replaced, facilities have been upgraded and additional redundancies have been added system-wide in order to maintain reliability.
Notable investments that will be in service for the first time this year, ensuring that energy is delivered safely and reliably to customers, include:
- $435 million for the Mickleton-Gloucester-Camden 230kV reinforcement consisting of 20 miles of new and upgraded overhead transmission, installing 16 miles of new 230kV underground circuits, and upgrades at five existing stations expected in-service for June. This project maintains electric service reliability for customers in Burlington, Camden and Gloucester counties.
- $77 million for the Aldene-Springfield Rd-West Orange 230kV Conversion Network reinforcement consisting of rewiring from Cranford to West Orange to replace underground circuits with high-rated conductors, and upgrades at two stations. This project maintains electric service reliability for customers in Union and Essex counties.
- $76 million to replace 14 aging transformers to maintain electric service reliability for customers in Bergen, Union, Middlesex, Somerset, Mercer, Gloucester and Burlington counties.
- $63 million for rewiring projects from Ridgefield to Saddle Brook to Fair Lawn in Bergen County to replace underground circuits with high-rated conductors to maintain reliability.
- $66 million for the Branchburg-Bridgewater reconfiguration of the switchyards at four existing stations and rewiring two overhead transmission lines. This project maintains electric service reliability for customers in Middlesex and Somerset counties.
- $41 million to install a 69,000-volt upgraded substation, providing increased local transmission supply capacity to customers in south Bergen and north Hudson counties. Additionally, $63 million for 69,000-volt upgrades to switching station equipment and lines in the East Rutherford, Fair Lawn and Paterson areas.
- $35 million invested in tree trimming across PSE&G's service territory to ensure adequate clearance and prevent tree contacts along transmission and distribution lines.
"These investments, along with our highly skilled and dedicated workforce, play a big role in making us one of the most reliable utilities in the country, and the most reliable in the Mid-Atlantic region year after year," said John Latka, senior vice president of electric operations for PSE&G. "Customers can rest assured that when temperatures spike and they turn on their air conditioners, we'll be ready."
The forecasted summer peak for this year is 10,306 megawatts. Last year's peak was 9,474 megawatts, set on July 2, and PSE&G's all-time summer peak was 11,108 megawatts, set on Aug. 2, 2006.
PSE&G expects to have no problem delivering the additional power required during the summer months, but utility crews will be ready to respond to service interruptions should they occur. The utility's rigorous, year-round preparedness program for summer includes conducting employee training; developing emergency summer operating plans; performing summer peak reliability analysis; inspecting transmission lines using helicopters and infrared cameras; and reinforcing lines and other equipment.