Municipal light plants provide reliable, low-cost electricity. The current proposal to install a third, 55 MW, fossil fuel power generation facility in Peabody threatens reliability, cost, public health, the environment, and our climate. The 300,000 ratepayers in the 14 municipalities comprising the generator consortium are investors whose money and health are at risk. A prudent investor will do careful due diligence—look under the rocks for the risks. Although in the past, considerations of profit and loss ruled investment decisions, we must now have a broader vision. From today, our vision must include public health, the environment, and the climate crisis.
The Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company (MMWEC), acting for a project consortium of 14 municipal light plants, is proposing to build a 55-megawatt peaker power plant in Peabody to assure a supply of capacity power during times of heavy use and in an emergency.
Their proposed use of fossil fuel blended with hydrogen will be a threat to public health, harm the natural environment, contribute to the climate crisis — and the plant is a risky financial investment.
We must not continue to rely on fossil fuels for everything. There are new ways to provide reliable, affordable, renewable power. Can we provide the peak demand for electricity using renewables?
Guest Article by Lew Milford and Abbe Ramanan (Clean Energy Group) ~ In a hotter world, we can expect more power outages — both from surging demand and from climate-driven disasters. The question is, how can we protect vulnerable people when the power goes out?...Industry representatives admit that natural gas is in the “fight of its life.” And what is their strategy to convince the public to keep burning gas? One slide revealed their plan: take advantage of power outage fears.
Many gas developers already have proposed continued investment in fossil fuel-based resources — and to blend and burn hydrogen with gas — because, they say, renewables will lead to more frequent power outages.
The Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company (MMWEC) is proposing to build a 55 MW natural gas and oil peaker power plant in Peabody, MA. Will this plant be an environmental, health, and safety threat to people in their homes, a school, and to a nearby dairy farm in Peabody and the Danversport area? Have these issues and the impact on the global climate crisis been evaluated? Have alternatives been considered? We don’t know, and the citizens of Peabody and Danvers have a right to know, as does every citizen of the Commonwealth.
In his Earth Day “Fireside Chat” with the Globe’s Sabrina Shankman, Governor Baker emphasized his awareness of the climate emergency. When Baker signed the Climate Roadmap Bill last year, the Commonwealth committed to a phaseout of fossil fuels in electricity generation. How can Baker support a new fossil plant?