Sen. Rodrigues joins power plant task force; planning for coal plant transitions

Senator Michael Rodrigues Senator Michael Rodrigues

 

Senator Michael Rodrigues

Senator Michael Rodrigues

Senator Michael Rodrigues (D-Westport) was appointed last week to serve on the state’s Plant Revitalization Task Force, a committee charged with developing a plan, adopting rules and regulations, and recommending legislative action to ensure the full deconstruction, remediation, and redevelopment or repowering of certain power plants across the Commonwealth.

“With the recent and sudden announcement that Brayton Point Power Plant plans to close in 2017, this appointment to the Plant Revitalization Task Force could not have come at a more critical juncture,” said Senator Rodrigues. “I am eager to serve and committed to ensuring the needs of the community of Somerset and the employees of Brayton Point are addressed as we work together in planning the future of coal-fired power plants and the communities that host them.”

The Plant Revitalization Task Force was created as part of “An Act Relative to the competitively priced electricity in the Commonwealth,” and was initially intended to plan for the decommission of the Salem Harbor Power Station by December 31, 2016. Since then, the Task Force has expanded in scope, and is now also required to make similar plans for other coal-fired power plants that may face closure prior to December 31, 2017.

Under the law, the Task Force has three goals: (1) options for the full financing of the cleanup of Salem Harbor Power Station, (2) the identification of existing state or federal programs available that may assist in the redevelopment or repowering of the site; and (3)the creation of new programs, grants, or other incentives to encourage the redevelopment or repowering of the site.

Richard Sullivan, secretary of energy and environmental affairs, serves as chairman of the Plant Revitalization Task Force. He formed three subcommittees; Sen. Rodrigues has been chosen to serve as a member of the Task Force’s Subcommittee on the Decommissioning of Future Plants.

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