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New England to Shut Down Last Coal Plants

New England to Shut Down Last Coal Plants

Mar 28, 2024

New England to Shut Down Last Coal Plants

Granite Shore Power has announced the upcoming closure of New England's last coal-fired power plants, Merrimack Station in Bow and Schiller Station in Portsmouth. The decision, made public on March 27, outlines their permanent shutdown within the next four years.

Merrimack Station, which began operations in the 1960s, is scheduled to cease operations by 2028, while Schiller Station, with a history dating back to the 1950s, will close by 2025. These closures are part of a voluntary agreement with environmental groups and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), following legal actions concerning environmental compliance.

The transition involves repurposing the sites into "first-of-their-kind" renewable energy facilities. Schiller Station is set to become a battery energy storage system, aiding in energy management, especially with the upcoming wind power projects off the coast of Martha's Vineyard and in the Gulf of Maine. Merrimack Station is expected to accommodate around 100 megawatts of solar energy.


This move comes after environmental organizations, including the Sierra Club and The Conservation Law Foundation, filed lawsuits accusing Granite Shore Power of ecological damage and violating EPA permits by discharging heated water into the Merrimack River. Although a December ruling by Judge Joseph LaPlante of the U.S. District Court of New Hampshire favored the power plants, the environmental groups have appealed the decision.

Jim Andrews, CEO of Granite Shore Power, stated, "we were firmly committed to transitioning our facilities away from coal and into a newer, cleaner energy future. By pursuing and ultimately entering into this voluntary agreement with the U.S. EPA, we are keeping that commitment." The Conservation Law Foundation declared the announcement a "victory for health, clean air and water, and the climate."

With these closures, New Hampshire is set to become the 16th coal-free state in the United States, according to the Sierra Club.

Originally reported by The Epoch Times


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