Connecticut Power supplier issues warninggreenspun.com : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread
Power supplier issues warning Associated Press June 16, 2001 HARTFORD -- The vice president of the New England regional power grid said Friday he was concerned that legislation requiring the cleanup of Connecticut's six dirtiest power plants could undercut the summertime power supply in part of the state.
The "Sooty Six" bill, which the Connecticut General Assembly approved in May, would require plants in Bridgeport, Middletown, Milford, Montville, New Haven and Norwalk to upgrade their facilities by Dec. 31, 2004, in order to meet federal emissions standards.
A study of power generation released Friday by ISO New England showed the newest combined-cycle power plants -- which use steam from a water-cooled primary turbine to power a secondary generator -- are more prone to mechanical problems, said Stephen Whitley, ISO vice president.
Because these newer plants are not always available, a shutdown of the state's older plants could leave parts of southern Connecticut without power, Whitley said. The grid in that region is not able to bring in enough power from outside if local plants can't meet demand, he said.
Legislation regulating cleanup of Connecticut plants must address the need for more transmission lines, Whitley said.
ISO New England is a not-for-profit company that oversees the region's electrical grid and wholesale electricity markets.
But lawmakers who support the "Sooty Six" bill criticize ISO for siding with the electric power industry, which opposed the legislation.
"It appears that ISO New England is simply one more special interest group, linked directly to the power companies," state Sen. Donald Williams, D-Killingly and co-chairman of the Environment Committee, said in a letter to the head of ISO.
Gov. John G. Rowland said Thursday he is considering vetoing the "Sooty Six" bill -- which he initially opposed, then indicated he would sign -- because of ISO's position. The governor has until June 22 to make a decision.
According to the ISO study, the rest of New England has more power availability than five years ago just after deregulation.
The market is responding well to power demands and is not in danger of California-style blackouts, Whitley said.
-- Martin Thompson (email@example.com), June 16, 2001