New York's Mayor in has proposed a $19 billion program to ameliorate the impact of climate change on New York City including its electric power grid. New York's climate team is projecting
- sea level increase of 0.3 meters by the 2020s and 0.75 meters by 2050
- 10 percent more rainfall
- four rather than three days each year with more than 5 centimeters of rainfall
- 39 to 52 days per year with temperatures over 90 degrees F rather than 18 days now.
According to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) by 2050 a quarter of New York City will be in floodplains, more than 40 miles of waterfront could see flooding on a regular basis. Many New Yorkers are seeing their flood insurance rates increase dramatically. The Mayor said in one neighborhood of Staten Island, where the average income is about $80 000, homeowners are facing annual flood insurance rates of $10 000.
The city is taking the approach of hardening critical infrastructure, designing programs to encourage and help owners of buildings to move or protect elecrrical and telecommunications equipment. He said that "Con Ed has made major investments in resiliency. That's a big reason why we've haven't had any major blackouts in a few years and they deserve real credit for that. But about two-thirds of our major substations and nearly all of the city's power plants are in flood plains today. Every summer, our electrical grid comes under extreme stress during heat waves. Both risks will get worse with climate change. And so the City will work with the Governor, private companies, and the Public Service Commission—the state agency that regulates utilities—to try to make sure that our systems don't fail us.…Our goal is not only to harden the electrical system, but to develop a cleaner, more reliable, affordable, and innovative energy system."