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Published at: Jan 12, 2012
source: Energy Boom

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A proposed biomass power plant in Plainfield, CT received a guarantee of funding this week. The $225 Million project is now on track to begin operation by the end of 2013. The completed plant will produce approximately 37.5 MW of electricity, enough to power 37,000 homes.

The Plainfield Renewable Energy Biomass Project, a proposed power plant in Connecticut owned by Atlanta-based Enova Energy Group, this week received a guarantee of funding to move ahead to the construction phase.

The facility is being jointly financed by engineering and technology defense contractor Science Applications International Corp. and private equity firm Carlyle Group, who will invest $225 Million in the project, which is expected to come online by the end of 2013.

When completed, the plant will burn enough organic material-construction and demolition debris, cut brush, tree stumps, recycled shipping pallets and wood scraps-to generate 37.5 megawatts of electricity, capable of powering 37,000 homes. A 15-year power purchase agreement has already struck with state utility Connecticut Light & Power for an undisclosed sum.

Biomass saw its fortunes rise through the 1980s and into the 1990s before sawmill closures and the California energy crisis took a toll on operations. Although the biomass industry's clean claims are viewed with skepticism by environmentalists, the alternative form of power is experiencing a rebirth of sorts as wood waste-rich New England states like New Hampshire, Massachusetts and Connecticut seek to diversify their energy portfolios.

Officials in Connecticut, a place known for its high energy prices, have been working to bring cheaper and cleaner energy to the state. It currently has a fairly ambitious goal in place to obtain 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources by 2020.


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