Con Edison Ends Westchester County Natural Gas Moratorium
Utility Company Paused New Gas Hookups in 2019
ARMONK, NY—Natural gas hookups are coming back to Westchester County after a fourand- a-half-year pause. Con Edison is set to end the moratorium affecting most of the county at the start of next month, according to an announcement reported by the Building & Realty Institute (BRI). The moratorium on gas installations— which didn’t affect existing users—began in March 2019 as demand outpaced supply.
That issue has been mitigated, according to the utilities company. Supply has been increased by a pipeline project, and the company forecast lower demand in a letter to the state Public Service Commission. In the letter to the Public Service Commission, Con Ed explained that said that the combination of increased supply from the Tennessee East 300 Project and lower forecasted demand resolves the Westchester supply-demand gap, which prompted the moratorium on new gas hookups.
Con Ed received 1,600 applications for gas service from southern Westchester in the two months leading up to the moratorium, LoHud reported in 2019. The state also announced a $250-million clean energy investment program to free up capacity in an area of Westchester most affected by Con Ed’s decision.
The moratorium forced developers and builders to make do without natural gas hookups.
“In the coming weeks, Con Edison will notify local agencies, elected officials, and those customers who had previously signed up on the gas service interest list which was maintained during the period the moratorium was in effect, even if they signed up on that list months ago. If you signed up on that list any time since 2019, you should expect further communication directly from Con Ed,” the BRI wrote in a statement. Con Ed is expected to remove moratorium-specific web pages from www.coned.com as well as post information on how to request new gas hookups or conversions from oil to gas beginning Dec. 1.
The BRI also noted that the moratorium lift does not change anything “with regard to the requirements under the All Electrification Act, whereby there will be statewide ban on fossil-fuel use in new construction. The measure will start in 2026 for structures of seven stories or less. The ban for larger buildings starts in 2029.
“To that end, one week after the lifting of the moratorium, the company will hold technical meetings with plumbers and general contractors and will also contact customers,” the BRI reported, including the dissemination of information about fossil-free alternatives. “All customers who request new service are required to sign an attestation confirming their awareness of New York State clean energy policy goals and the availability of non-fossil fuel alternative heating options,” according to the BRI of Westchester & the Mid-Hudson Region.