Mercer wants city to be backup water source for power plant

Mercer wants city to be backup water source for power plant

PAWTUCKET – City leaders are looking to provide a backup supply of water to a Burrillville power plant if and when the water is needed.

The City Council last week approved a request from Councilor Terrence Mercer to send a letter to the Pawtucket Water Supply Board asking to research the possibility of providing water on an emergency basis to Invenergy and its Clear River Energy Center in Burrillville.

As Mercer sees it, if the power plant is going to need the water from a wholesale supplier anyway, officials should “at least research the possibility” of providing water as needed.

Mercer said he’s in no way weighing in on if the power plant should be built, but said if it’s to be built anyway and the water is needed for cooling, Pawtucket leaders wouldn’t be fulfilling their responsibility if they did not at least look at selling water.

Mercer’s request for a letter was seconded by Councilor Albert Vitali Jr. and unanimously approved.

In a Jan. 11 application from Invenergy to the Rhode Island Energy Facility Siting Board, the company details its plan to purchase water from Johnston and get a “contingent/redundant supply from private water suppliers, if needed.”

Representatives for the Pawtucket Water Supply Board have repeatedly said they have plenty of water to sell.

In a move that was surprising to many, the Johnston Town Council approved an agreement to sell water for cooling at the highly controversial natural gas-burning power plant. The Woonsocket City Council rejected an $18.5 million deal to sell water to Invenergy.


Happy to see the council provide the leadership that the city is sorely
Lacking in the Grebien administration !!! Way to go!