SOMERSET – The energy bill that state Rep. Patricia Haddad (D-Somerset) has been working on did not take very long to already start having an impact not just on the market but perhaps also on her hometown.
The energy bill was passed by the Massachusetts House of Representatives late Sunday night and she was informed that DONG Energy had filed on Monday morning with ISO New England to do an interconnection at the Brayton Point power plant site in Somerset to transmit electricity from offshore wind power. That was the type of development that Rep. Haddad had been hoping would happen when she was working on the energy bill.
“It is a small thing, but it is a beginning to show Somerset still has value and as this industry matures, there will be more opportunities,” Rep. Haddad said.
Using the power plant site for transmission of wind power would not bring in near the amount of tax revenue that the power plant’s owner used to pay for Somerset. The Brayton Point power plant is scheduled to close next year.
The energy bill allows for the development of up to 1,600 megawatts of offshore wind power and up to 1,200 megawatts of hydro power.
Rep. Haddad said wind energy could be generated 10 or 12 miles off of Martha’s Vineyard and then sent through relay stations and to the Brayton Point site to be connected into the electric grid. She said Brayton Point has been identified as a preferred site for transmission of wind energy.
Rep. Haddad said they have to make sure there is capacity in the lines to bring in wind energy and distribute it. She said she is confident the area will get wind energy business because of the bill that was approved on Sunday.
Rep. Haddad said she needs to talk to the owner of the Brayton Point power plant to point out the opportunities availablDONG Energy, the world leader in offshore wind development, construction and operation, today filed an Interconnection Request Application with ISO-New England, a key step in the development process for the company’s Bay State Wind project. If approved, this request will give DONG Energy the ability to utilize Brayton Point as the connection point for bringing offshore wind energy from the turbines into the substation and subsequently, onto the grid.
The request by DONG Energy was for 800 megawatts of power.
“While we are still several years and several steps from construction, the filing of this application is an important milestone in our efforts to bring offshore wind to Massachusetts households and businesses,” said Thomas Brostrøm, general manager of North America, DONG Energy Wind Power. “The energy bill has paved the way for the creation of a viable offshore wind energy industry here in Massachusetts, delivering cost effective clean energy and helping the state reduce greenhouse gas emissions. On the heels of this historic legislation, we are taking an important step forward for our Bay State Wind project.”
Brostrøm added; “We are particularly pleased that our power will be coming ashore on the South Coast, given the support for offshore wind power from local communities and elected officials, especially Rep. Patricia Haddad,” because of the energy bill and get them to talk to people who work in the wind power industry.
The “world leader in offshore wind,” DONG Energy made its first foray into North America last year by securing a lease area located in the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 15 miles off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard that was designated and approved by the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). DONG Energy is committed to delivery of a utility-scale wind farm with an installed capacity of up to 1,000 megawatts, enough to power over 500,000 Massachusetts homes.
Based on DONG Energy’s experience, the company expects a project of this dimension to create an estimated 1,000 new jobs in Massachusetts during construction and approximately 100 new jobs in the state to support the operational life of the offshore wind farm.
Given upcoming retirement of the existing coal plant at the facility, roughly 1,000 megawatts of interconnection capability is expected to become available at Brayton Point, without significant system upgrade costs.
DONG Energy’s Massachusetts project, branded as ‘Bay State Wind,’ offers the state an opportunity to bring clean, cost-effective, renewable energy to the state’s residents and businesses, while reducing carbon emissions and advancing the state’s greenhouse gas reduction goals and Renewable Portfolio Standard requirements, according to information provided by DONG Energy.
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