Nearly $3 billion in infrastructure investments will maintain reliability
(NEWARK, N.J. – June 3, 2019) Public Service Electric and Gas, New Jersey’s largest utility, is well prepared to meet customer demand for safe, reliable electricity this summer. The utility has made significant infrastructure investments that will be in service for the first time this season, including nearly $2 billion in electric projects and about $750 million in gas projects since last summer.
“Our preparation enables PSE&G customers’ power to stay on more than 99 percent of the time,” said Jack Bridges, PSE&G vice president-electric operations. “Our infrastructure investments and momentum to modernize have helped us remain one of the nation’s most reliable utility companies, bringing significant benefits to PSE&G customers.”
PSE&G has been named the most reliable utility in the Mid-Atlantic region 17 years running, by PA Consulting. The Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers ranks the company second nationally for having short durations when the power does go out.
“Each year, we strengthen our distribution system so that fewer customers experience outages and, when they do occur, the duration is shorter,” Bridges said. “One major effort this year involved adding more smart devices across the state to bolster safety, resiliency and reliability.”
PSE&G is seeking to continue such improvements in its Energy Strong II proposal pending before the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities.
Notable projects completed in time for summer and the start of hurricane season include:
- Energized seven 69,000-volt substations and associated lines. The new transmission networks provide increased local power supply for customers across our service area, including many living in Essex, Hudson, Mercer and Passaic counties.
- Completed six hardening projects to raise and/or rebuild station equipment in flood-prone areas, benefiting customers in Bergen, Essex and Hudson counties.
- Completed three enhancement projects to normalize the voltage and increase capacity, benefiting customers in Bergen and Hudson counties.
- Completed physical security upgrades at two transmission switching stations, in compliance with federal requirements, benefiting areas surrounding Bergen and Camden counties.
- Replaced eight aging station transformers to maintain electric service reliability for customers in Bergen, Burlington, Essex and Middlesex counties.
- Completed circuit upgrades to improve the reliability of 205 circuits that serve over 320,000 customers across the state.
PSE&G also is slated to partially energize the $739 million Metuchen-Trenton-Burlington upgrade in mid-June. Approximately 17 miles of new overhead lines and equipment will be placed in service, from the Metuchen Switching Station in Edison to the Devils Brook Substation in South Brunswick, enhancing the electric transmission system in the region. The full project, which includes strengthening the electric transmission system between the Metuchen station and the Burlington Switching Station in Burlington, also will modify, upgrade or reconfigure 17 electric stations along the approximate 55-mile route by 2022.
Gas System Modernization Program work will continue throughout the summer in neighborhoods across New Jersey, with details available for customers on the pseg.com website. This second phase, known as GSMP II, started in January and will upgrade up to 875 miles of aging pipes to durable plastic and make other gas infrastructure improvements through 2023.
Prepared for Additional Power Demand
The 2019 forecasted summer peak is 9,904 megawatts. Last year’s peak was 9,978 megawatts, set on September 6, 2018.
PSE&G expects to have no problem delivering additional power, and utility crews are at the ready to respond to service interruptions should they occur. The utility’s rigorous preparedness program for summer includes: conducting annual hurricane and tropical storm drills; employee training; developing emergency summer operating plans and performing summer peak reliability analysis; helicopter and climbing inspections of transmission circuits; infrared inspections; audits and inventories; equipment repairs and replacements; system reinforcements, and transmission line work.
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Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G) is New Jersey’s oldest and largest gas and electric delivery public utility, serving nearly three-quarters of the state’s population. PSE&G is the winner of the ReliabilityOne Award for superior electric system reliability as well as the 2018 Outstanding Customer Reliability Experience Award. PSE&G is a subsidiary of Public Service Enterprise Group Inc. (PSEG) (NYSE:PEG), a diversified energy company. PSEG has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for North America for 11 consecutive years.
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