Natural gas plant proposed for Shoreham nuclear property

07/06/2012 11:00 AM |

A Japanese energy company has pitched a plan to build a 398-megawatt, gas-fired power plant at the site of the decommissioned Shoreham nuclear power plant.

J-Power USA, a subsidiary of the Japanese conglomerate which already runs a “peaker” station at the on-site Long Island Power Authority plant that’s used during power shortages, would build the plant just west of the nuclear station.

In order to operate the plant, J-Power has proposed extending a natural gas pipeline from the Long Island Sound, according to a nine-page proposal the company has submitted with New York State.

The company is also seeking to expand production at the peaker plant in Shoreham, as well as another one in Edgewood.

J-Power submitted the plans as part of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s “Energy Highway” initiative to connect Long Island and New York City with more energy plants in other parts of the region.

“Right now natural gas is the flavor of the day,” said Sid Bail, president of the Wading River Civic Association and a member of a LIPA committee looking into possible uses for the old nuclear facility.

“The advantages of this in terms of the community is increase in tax base,” he added. “Another advantage is what’s lovingly called ‘community benefits.’

“For controversial projects, [the company will sometimes] pay additional funds to fund worthwhile things in the community. That’s kind of what happens.”

Mr. Bail said that noise coming from a new plant would be a concern to locals. LIPA had also claimed to make Shoreham a green energy power station, he said, and noted that gas is a cleaner fuel than oil, but still pollutes the environment.

“The concern side of it, is that LIPA started ‘a new direction’ for Shoreham, green energy for Shoreham,” Mr. Bail said. “[Natural gas] is a fossil fuel. It’s the cleanest of the fossil fuels, but its still a fossil fuel.”

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Read more about the proposed power facility and other projects in the works for the Shoreham plant property in the July 12 edition for the Riverhead News-Review.

Read the power plant proposal in full below.

Shoreham Plant