FAQs about the Empire State Line

General

What is the Empire State Line project?

The Empire State Line project includes two new 345 kV switchyards near Dysinger and Elma, a 20-mile 345 kV transmission line connecting the switchyards, as well as a phase-angle regulator to control power flows across the line. The Dysinger switchyard will become the new transmission hub in western New York, connecting a total of seven 345 kV lines, and will provide a backbone for future renewable resource integration in western New York.

Project Benefits

How will the western New York region benefit from the project?

Currently, changes in the operation of the electric grid in western New York region have caused congestion that limits power flows and causes spikes in its electricity costs. The Empire State Line Project will address this congestion by enabling better power flow and stabilizing prices at a lower level. According to the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) analysis, electric customers in western New York are expected to save approximately $230 million over the next 20 years once the Empire State Line goes into service.

Are there other benefits that the Empire State Line will bring to the region?

The Project will include a new switchyard at the Dysinger switchyard. This switchyard will create a new transmission hub in the region, increasing reliability and providing the opportunity for additional renewable generation development.

Will there be any environmental impacts or benefits from the Empire State Line project?

NextEra Energy Transmission New York (NEETNY) is proposing to construct the Empire State Line within the existing utility rights-of-way (ROW), which is expected to minimize potential environmental impacts to habitat, wildlife and vegetation, wetlands, visual and cultural resources, and landowners. Potential impacts will be fully studied and reviewed during the Article VII environmental permitting process.

In addition, the Empire State Line will facilitate the flow of renewable energy in the Niagara region as well as the development of new renewable generation. This will support the State of New York’s goal of having 50 percent of the state’s energy coming from renewable resources by 2030. The NYISO analysis also projected approximately 7.4 MM tons of carbon emissions reduction.

Will NEETNY reach out to the Native American communities?

Yes, NEETNY will coordinate and engage with the Native American communities.

Construction

Will the construction cause disruptions in the neighborhoods near the line?

Construction will take place over a 12-month period, during daylight hours only. Since the project is primarily within an existing utility right-of-way, the majority of the construction work will be within that rights-of-way, with access over public roads.

What will the workforce requirements be?

NextEra Energy, Inc. (NextEra Energy) hires qualified engineering, procurement, and construction firms that have a history of sourcing the workforce from local labor organizations, and we intend to do the same for the Empire State Line project.  We would expect those firms to bring on between 50 and 100 workers.

When will the project be completed and operational?

The project will be in service by June 2022.

Project Cost

How much will the Empire State Line project cost, and who will pay for it?

The Empire State Line project was selected by the NYISO as the “more efficient or cost-effective transmission solution” out of 12 proposals submitted by various developers. NYISO has estimated the cost of the project to be approximately $180 million.

The cost of the project will be recovered from New York state electric consumers.

Will the Empire State Line request any tax abatements?

No, this project does not expect to seek or receive any property or sales tax abatements.

Where can I find a copy of the Article VII application?

The Article VII application is posted on the NYS Department of Public Service website. Physical copies of the Article VII application are also available at the following local repositories:

  • Clarence Public Library
  • Eden Library
  • Elma Public Library
  • Lancaster Public Library
  • Marilla Free Library
  • Newstead Public Library
  • Royalton-Hartland Community Library