Hot Air

The Story

Photo: Sean Rayford/Getty Images

Anticipating a hot weekend, Mayor de Blasio took the unusual step of ordering all high-rise office buildings to set their thermostats to 78 degrees. The mayor said that he wants to make sure that excess demand doesn’t strain the power grid. But his action—which prompts as many questions as answers—seems to be just political posturing.

The Facts You Need to Know

  1. Grid: Utility and energy professionals say that thermostat levels have little effect on the power grid, which already has mechanisms in place to manage demand from large customers. Read more.

  2. Buildings: De Blasio has made dubious claims that office buildings play a major role in climate change. Read more.

  3. Energy: Bans on pipelines are causing a supply-side energy shortage in the New York region. Read more.

“To the extent that anyone even pays attention to what de Blasio says, he preferred to panic people rather than let Con Ed try to manage the situation.”

Nicole Gelinas, Manhattan Institute senior fellow

Twitter Take

The Past is Present

Spare Some Electricity, Mr. Mayor? By Nicole Gelinas (July 25, 2006)

“Over the past 10 years, Con Ed says, electricity demand in Gotham has risen 20 percent. It’s no mystery why: over that time period, New York developers have built 160,000 new homes—equivalent to a Boston-sized city.”

And in other news...

“At least 50,000 customers were without power in New York City and Westchester County on Sunday night as the third day of dangerously hot weather continued to grip the region, officials said.”