The Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) and Consolidated Edison Company of New York (Con Edison) today announced that the Y50 cable, which delivers power to the Long Island Control Area (LICA)and a portion of Queens in Con Edison's service territory, has been returned to service ahead of schedule.

The cable, which runs some 18 miles from the Dunwoodie North Substation in Westchester County to Glenwood Landing in Nassau County, went out of service on May 18th, due to a fault that occurred in a section of the cable between Davids and Pea islands in the Long Island Sound near New Rochelle.

Capable of carrying 600 megawatts (MW) of electricity before the fault occurred, the Y50 cable will be operated at a lower capacity of 400MW for the foreseeable future to reduce stress on the 24-year old supply link.

LIPA and Con Ed share the power carried by the cable. As a result of its diminished, or derated, operating status, the LICA will receive approximately 250 MW of the power carried by Y50 and Con Edison will receive 150MW of electricity for its use.

Cable repairs, conducted on an expedited 24/7 basis until finished this past weekend, were completed nearly three weeks ahead of schedule, according to LIPA and Con Edison.

The cable has been placed back in service as the region prepares for several days of extremely hot and humid weather.

"Having the Y50 cable back in service is extremely important for Long Island," said LIPA Chairman Richard M. Kessel. "We're projecting record levels of electricity demand this summer. Without Y50 in service, it would be very difficult for LIPA to sustain a reliable supply of electricity during periods of high temperatures and humidity. Its return to service comes in the nick of time.

"Con Edison and LIPA's electric system contractor, KeySpan, deserve a lot of credit for completing the repairs ahead of schedule," said Mr. Kessel. "I want to personally thank all the Con Edison people who worked so hard in moving the Y50 repair process forward as expeditiously as possible.

"Con Edison has been under tremendous pressure since September 11th, to rebuild its system in lower Manhattan while preparing to meet this summer's anticipated demand in New York City," Mr. Kessel said. "The Con Edison engineers who planned the repairs and the field crews who worked around the clock under extremely difficult conditions all did an outstanding job to help return this vital piece of equipment to service.

"We appreciate KeySpan's efforts too," said Mr. Kessel, "and those of the New York State Public Service Commission, the Department of Environmental Conservation and the New York Independent System Operator who all worked in a highly cooperative and coordinated fashion to expedite the repair process.

"I am hopeful that with Y50 back in service, it will not be necessary to employ the emergency power generators that have been installed in Shoreham/Wading River and Holtsville," said Mr. Kessel. "But they will remain in place and will be available for use should weather conditions become extreme, or should the cable experience another fault this summer.

LIPA is still projecting that the new cross-Sound cable, which was installed between New Haven and Shoreham in May, will be operational in late July. The new cable will carry 330MW of electricity. Also anticipated to come on line in late July are the last four of ten new turbines commissioned by LIPA last year for this summer's use.

All together, the ten new turbines will generate 407MW of power. The units owned and operated by KeySpan at Glenwood Landing and Port Jefferson have been operational since mid-June. The units built and operated by FPL Energy at Far Rockaway, and the unit built by Calpine in Bethpage became available just last week.

"Because of the forecast for high heat and humidity this week, the next few days are projected to be high-demand days for electricity," said Mr. Kessel. "It's helpful that schools on Long Island have recessed for the summer, and that we have the July 4th holiday on Thursday. But we must continue to emphasize that everyone must conserve electricity as much as possible by using it as efficiently as possible all summer long."

LIPA serve some 1.1 million electric customers in Nassau and Suffolk counties, and the Rockaway Peninsula in Queens. LIPA is also responsible for the delivery of electricity supplied by the New York Power Authority from upstate resources to end users on Long Island such as the municipal electric utilities in Rockville Centre, Freeport and Greenport, and Power for Jobs customers throughout the Long Island Control Area.