$1M federal grant to aid rail study
The grant announced Monday at the train station in Secaucus is the first step toward building a new microgrid to power trains during major outages. No timetable or price tag were given. The federal and state governments are partnering with Sandia National Laboratories, a microgrid designer for the military, on a conceptual design.
It would be the first application of the technology outside the military, Gov. Christie said, and it would supply highly reliable power when regular power sources fail.
Christie said the partnership would lead to "a revolutionary technology that will keep our people and our economy on the move for decades to come."
"We are past the point of debating whether policy responses are needed," Moniz said, noting that the Northeast already is seeing more intense storms, rising sea levels and higher temperatures.
Christie has refused to acknowledge any role climate change may have played in last October's megastorm, which knocked out power to more than 5 million users, severely flooded the Hoboken rail station and caused $120 million in damage to the cars that were kept in low-lying storage yards.
The governor said Monday that his administration would review pre-hurricane decisions made by various departments and agencies including NJ Transit, but that "getting people back in their homes" was a higher priority.
Christie said the storm presented an opportunity to learn do things better in the future.
NJ Transit had a 31/2-page hurricane plan to move its trains to higher ground before Superstorm Sandy hit, The Record newspaper found, but the agency instead moved locomotives and rail cars to low-lying rail yards.
The newspaper had to file a lawsuit to get the transit agency to release a copy of the plan, prepared four months before Sandy. In response to the initial request, NJ Transit released a copy of the plan that was completely blacked out except for the title.