Because Fishers Island, New York, is close to Connecticut, it is served by the Connecticut Municipal Electrical Energy Co-op, or CMEEC. Recently, CMEEC installed a 2.5 MW generator set from Cummins Power Generation to provide emergency and peaking power for the island’s residents.
Before that, power was provided by means of a cable running from a utility generating facility in Connecticut — along the floor of Long Island Sound — two miles out to the island. This cable is susceptible to getting snagged by ships’ anchors, and if the cable did break, power to the island would be knocked out for some time. It would take months to repair or replace the cable, and several days just to get some form of portable power generation set up and connected to the distribution system on the island. With the new system, Fishers Island will be able to start the generator set and supply power within an hour of a mainland power interruption.
Beyond supplying standby power, CMEEC also wanted to reduce the amount of electricity imported to the island during periods of peak usage. So the Cummins Power Generation system will also be used to handle peak energy demands, which typically occur during summer weekends. The new generator set is capable of providing sufficient energy to power the whole island, even during the summer, when the population swells from about 300 year-round residents to 2,000 people and demand for power reaches 2 MW.