LYNN – A long-awaited project to power some of the Lynn Water and Sewer Commission plant by wind is steps to fruition, as city officials scoped out the pieces of a wind turbine Saturday that recently arrived from India.
The wind turbine’s generators and three blades sat lying on the grounds of the Commercial Street plant, recently shipped from India, where they were built. City Councilor Wayne Lozzi was among several councilors who toured the pieces Saturday, a moment he said pays off years of planning to bring a wind turbine to Lynn.
“It’s refreshing to see it come to reality,” he said. “We’ve been trying to get it off the ground, and it’s where society needs to head, toward renewable energy.”
But in the not-too-distant past, a publicly owned wind turbine was an unthinkable project in Lynn, said City Councilor Pete Capano, who also toured the turbine Saturday.
“At the time it was like pie in the sky, it was a long shot,” he said.
But Lozzi, the Council representative on the LWSC, worked closely with LWSC Treatment Operations Director Robert Tina to secure grants to pay for much of the wind turbine, which Lozzi said helped other city officials get on board with the project.
In the end, Lynn received $1.2 million in grants to pay for the $1.8 million project, drastically reducing the city’s contributions.
“This is the cheapest wind turbine of any municipality in Massachusetts,” Lozzi said.
The 258-foot-tall wind turbine will power 20 percent of the wastewater treatment plant, stabilizing water and sewer rates in Lynn. It is expected to save the city $3 to $6 million during its estimated 20-year lifespan, Tina said.
And within the next five years, the wind turbine could pay for itself, Lozzi said.
“It’s a revenue-producing mechanism,” Lozzi said.
The turbine helps put Lynn on the green-energy map, said Council President Timothy Phelan, who also toured the turbine Saturday.
“We’re keeping up with the times,” he said.
The turbine will be erected in mid-to-late February as the final piece, a tower to connect the generator and blades, is built in Middleboro, Tina said.
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