Brayton Point moves forward toward wind energy

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Brayton Point moves forward toward wind energy

SOMERSET, Mass. (WPRI) — After the high-profile demolition last month of the Brayton Point coal power plant cooling towers, the owners of the newly-christened Brayton Point Commerce Center launched a partnership Monday to host a massive energy conversion center.

But this time, the partnership is based on wind instead of coal.

The Commercial Development Company (CDC), now the parent company of Brayton Point and Anbaric, an electric transmission system developer, will develop a 1,200-megawatt high-voltage direct current, or HVDC, converter facility.

Anbaric CEO Edward Krapels said the facility will take wind energy from offshore, convert it into alternating current (AC) and put it into the existing infrastructure.

The Anbaric Brayton Point HVDC proposal is the only one in the Massachusetts market right now, Krapels said.

Before the $650 million renewable energy investment was announced, losing the Brayton Point plant was a difficult situation to face economically, said David Berube, the chairman of the Somerset Board of Selectmen.

“At one point, both power plants contributed approximately 40% of the tax base to the town for the amount of about $20 million. With this loss of revenue, it has been a huge financial burden on the town,” he said.

But now with the new project, town and state leaders said Somerset’s future is looking brighter.

Rep. Joe Kennedy III, D-Massachusetts, praised the new company’s entry into the area, “that will give reason for literally hundreds of new jobs,” he said, sending “a message about what we as a nation can do to combat climate change.”

Anbaric officials said they plant to begin construction by 2021 and offshore wind farms will be in place by 2023.

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