The Canal Electric Generating Station in Sandwich is in the midst of a modernization project that will add a 1.5-MW solar array and new 350-MW combustion turbine to its two aging boilers, which are largely fueled by oil. On Wednesday February 8 at 7 pm at the Sandwich Town Hall, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) will hold a public hearing addressing air emissions from the new gas-fired unit, which will cast a large carbon shadow for decades.
350MA-Cape Cod, rejuvenated by recent events, encourages local citizens to attend the DEP hearing and register their opinions on the new unit, which will rely on fracked gas and is projected to result in almost 1 million tons of additional onsite CO2e emissions annually starting in 2019. This total does not account for methane leakage during the fracking process – fugitive emissions that according to recent studies put natural gas almost on par with coal, in terms of life-cycle impacts.
The state is not projected to achieve its statutory goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2020, but this major new source of emissions has already been approved under the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act and by the Cape Cod Commission. The Commission’s decision, which did not consider where the fuel is coming from, nor how much greenhouse gas emissions will be produced, is available here. The Town of Sandwich has signed on as an enthusiastic supporter, with skids greased by more than $50M in payments promised by the power plant’s owner over the next 20-plus years.
Contact: Grace Barter, 350MA-Cape Cod, firstname.lastname@example.org