PSE&G ready for peak summer electricity demand in New Jersey

Published on June 07, 2021 by Dave Kovaleski

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Public Service Electric and Gas (PSE&G) has invested more than $2 billion in infrastructure improvements over the past year and is prepared for the summer electricity demand.

New Jersey’s largest utility has invested more than $1.7 billion in electric projects and approximately $821 million in gas projects since last May.

“Our preparation enables PSE&G customers’ power to stay on more than 99 percent of the time,” Jack Bridges, PSE&G vice president – electric operations, said. “Our investments in new infrastructure have helped us remain one of the nation’s most reliable utility companies, bringing significant benefits to PSE&G customers. Each year, we strengthen our distribution system so that fewer customers experience outages and, when they do occur, the duration is shorter. One major effort this year involved adding more smart devices across the state to bolster safety, resiliency, and reliability.”

This year, PSE&G completed the $739 million Metuchen-Trenton-Burlington project, strengthening the electric transmission system between the Metuchen Switching Station and the Burlington Switching Station. In addition, PSE&G energized the second and final segment of the $90 million Aldene-Warinanco-Linden project, which upgraded 6 miles of 230kV overhead transmission circuits from the Aldene Station to the Linden VFT Station.

Also, the company has expanded its 69kV network statewide, completed a number of substation hardening and transformer replacement projects, and completed circuit upgrades to improve the reliability of 583 circuits that serve over 725,000 customers across the state.

Further, its Gas System Modernization Program work will continue throughout the summer in neighborhoods across New Jersey. This second phase started in January 2019 and will upgrade up to 875 miles of aging pipes to durable plastic and make other gas infrastructure improvements through 2023. Through May 2021, PSE&G has upgraded some 619 miles of mains.

Through December 2023, PSE&G is implementing a number of significant reliability improvements as part of its $842 million Energy Strong II program. Among them, they are raising and hardening equipment in 16 stations located in flood zones, upgrading to smart grid technologies to reduce the number of people impacted by an outage, hardening certain circuits to reduce power outages by adding measures such as upgraded poles and cables that are more resistant to tree and limb damage, and creating an advanced distribution management system to make the system smarter.

As for this summer, the 2021 forecasted summer peak is 9,871 megawatts. Last year’s peak was 9,557 megawatts, set on July 22, 2020. PSE&G expects to have no problem delivering additional power, and utility crews are ready to respond to service interruptions should they occur.