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PLMP Officials Onhand for Berkshire Wind Project Dedication

Peabody Municipal Light Plant customers will soon have some of their electricity provided by clean wind power.

On Thursday, Commissioner Tom Paras, PMLP Manager Bill Waters, PMLP Assistant Manager Glen Trueira, and PMLP Commissioner Bob Wheatley attended the dedication of the Berkshire Wind Project atop Brodie Mountain in Hancock, Massachusetts.

They joined Governor Deval Patrick and other public officials and members of the Berkshire Wind Power Cooperative in dedicating this public power project, the largest wind generation facility in Massachusetts. Members of the Cooperative include 14 Massachusetts municipal utilities, including PLMP, which is also the largest participant, and the Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company.

Located in Hancock and Lanesborough, Berkshire Wind turbines were installed in 2009 and 2010.

"This project marks a new era of renewable energy development in Massachusetts today," Governor Patrick said. "Creating scores of jobs in its construction, helping to create relief from the price volatility and pollution of imported fossil fuels, and advancing Massachusetts' nation-leading goals to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase the use of renewable energy, Berkshire Wind is a beacon of our clean-energy future."

The wind farm takes advantage of wind resources along the ridgeline of Brodie Mountain with 10 General Electric 1.5-megawatt turbines.

The project is owned by the Berkshire Wind Power Cooperative Corp., a cooperative of 15 nonprofit public power entities, including the Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Co. and 14 consumer-owned municipal utilities that provide electricity to Ashburnham, Boylston, Groton, Holden, Hull Ipswich, Marblehead, Paxton, Peabody, Shrewsbury, Sterling, Templeton, Wakefield and West Boylston.

Richard K. Sullivan Jr., secretary of Massachusetts Energy and Environmental Affairs, said the wind project is a historical achievement.

"Congratulations to Berkshire Wind, which makes history today by officially becoming the commonwealth's first on-shore wind farm," he said. "Through this project, and numerous other smaller wind projects across the state, we are making steady progress toward Gov. Patrick's goal to install 2,000 megawatts of wind power in Massachusetts by 2020."

H. Bradford White, president of the Berkshire Wind cooperative, said the effort to harness wind energy was a response to their customers' need for renewable energy.

Figures provided by the Berkshire Wind Cooperative show that the wind farm will produce more than 52,500 megawatt hours of electricity annually, enough to power 6,000 homes, and will offset production of 612,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide and the use of 1.7 million barrels of oil.

This project will help Peabody to diversify our power supplies and stabilize costs over the long term by reducing reliance of fossil fuels.

Peabody Municipal Light, being the largest participant, will receive the largest share of project output.

Submitted by Tom Paras, commissioner, Peabody Municipal Light Plant.

Peabody Pete May 10, 2011 at 03:28 PM
Cost? If it cost me more to have Green energy. I dont want it. Funny, there is not one mention of cost savings in this article. It is commonly known this wind power cost A LOT more than current power options. This article is full of WIND, not just wind power! Another hand in my pocket taking my money. how about some real cost savings for my pocket instead.
PeabodyCitizen May 11, 2011 at 03:17 PM
Questions and facts: Roughly only about 1% of our electricity is generated from oil. Wind power costs multiple times as much as standard sources. Have any coal/gas plants been decommissioned due to wind turbines being in use? Where is the science/proof about global warming/carbon emissions (see: http://www.cato.org/pubs/articles/michaels_ANPR_EPA.pdf)? Did you know that conventional power plants still have to run, even with the wind turbines in use, due to the intermittent blowing of the wind? Wind does not exist on demand; it is not dependable.
PeabodyCitizen May 11, 2011 at 03:18 PM
What about the materials/steel needed to build and house the wind turbines/farms? What about the noise and health concerns of those living near the wind turbines? What about the property values of those living near them? You, the ratepayer, are being charged for the membership of Massachusetts in something called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative—a carbon tax trading scheme. Three states may opt out of the scheme (see: http://www.nhpr.org/three-states-consider-withdrawal-rggi). What happens to wind power in very cold/freezing temperatures (see here: http://www.energytribune.com/articles.cfm/6310/Britains-Wind-Farms-are-No-Spin-Zones-When-Cold-Hits) or the wind isn’t dependable (see: http://opinion.financialpost.com/2011/03/05/lawrence-solomon-don%E2%80%99t-count-on-constant-electricity-under-renewable-energy-says-uk-electricity-ceo)? Who made gas, oil, etc., “evil” anyway (see: http://blog.mlive.com/readreact/2009/04/oil_is_not_evil_we_need_it_to.html)? The hyopcritic people of the world who own multiple estates, fly around on private jets, and drive in large gas-eating vehicles?
PeabodyCitizen May 11, 2011 at 03:19 PM
My bet: The electric rates in Peabody, along with the other user communities, will go up not down, due to this wind turbine power scheme. Everyone wants to believe that wind power is “free” and that it’s a win-win. We want to believe that wind power is “good” and everything else is “evil.” Wind power is not efficient, is not dependable, and does not reduce costs; it increases costs. Also, think Evergreen Solar (see: http://www.masslive.com/news/index.ssf/2011/01/after_accepting_58_million_massachusetts_subsidies_evergreen_solar.html). Increasing costs, not efficient, not dependable, shaky science/science doesn’t exist. All subsidized with your taxpayer $$$. Mandated and/or encouraged by government.
Felix May 16, 2011 at 11:28 AM
Dude, You sound like someone who thinks the blue collar working class of Peabody are nothing but idiots just concerned about the loose change in our pockets. My parents work hard (dad in the construction biz & my mom is a school cafeteria worker) who barely make enough to make ends meet but they know the value of creating a greener & cleaner environment for Peabody, they would pay the fee if it's part of creating clean energy for the city. I go to school full time (NSCC) and work 2 part time jobs (as a roofer and line cook at a hotel) to pay for my tuition so that I can have a better financial future but I also want a cleaner and safer environment for my future! Get a clue dude, u don't even sound like a regular person from Peabody. What r u? A lobbyist for the oil & coal industry? THANK YOU PMLP 4 INVESTING IN CLEAN ENERGY 4 PEABODY, KEEP IT UP! I got your back man and so do the rest of Peabody's hardworking folks & keep the clean energy on focus!
Peabody Pete May 16, 2011 at 12:53 PM
HeyKid Flex, you have no idea how the world works do you? Funny coming from someone who doesnt pay an electric bill.... Atleast your working hard and going to college I give you that. Let me ask you a question: If you went to the gas station and could pay $2.00 a gallon or $6.00 a green gallon. Im sure you would not fill it up on the green gallon. If someone was putting 10$ in my pocket for every gallon of green gas , Im sure you would then fill it up however....... If you are struggleing to make ends meet you are a not a fan of green energy. Hmm let me Eat or go green? Easy choice kid!

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