Friday, August 7, 2009

Sewer plant gets a grant

This just in, from Mike Costello's office:

Newburyport to Receive Green Technology Grant

BOSTON – The City of Newburyport will receive a $3,055,000 grant for installing green technology at the city’s sewer treatment plant, State Representative Michael A. Costello has announced.

The rehabilitation of the sewer plant will cost an estimated $24.4 million, and the grant for energy efficiency will reduce that total by more than 12 percent. The grant was distributed through the Green Infrastructure portion of the federal stimulus contribution to the State Revolving Fund. The sewer treatment plant upgrade also qualified for the principle forgiveness program of the SRF, which will save the city about 9 percent of its borrowing costs for the project.

“This grant is a triple bonus for the city of Newburyport. It will reduce the upfront cost to construct the new sewer treatment plant. It will save the city on borrowing costs. And it will also make the plant more cost effective in the long-term by ensuring that energy efficient technologies are used,” said Representative Costello.

“I would like to thank Environmental Secretary Ian Bowles, who was a strong advocate for energy efficient policies on the national level during the stimulus discussions. I also want to thank DEP Commissioner Laurie Burt who worked with city officials during recent weeks to ensure that this project would qualify under the program’s guidelines.”

The energy efficient improvements at the new sewer treatment plant include: reconstruction of the main operations building using energy efficient (LEED) design principles, the replacement of the existing belt filter press with a rotary press, an upgrade of the existing mechanical surface aerators and the replacement of the pump with higher efficiency equipment. New lighting, heating and ventilation systems will be installed. And the project includes a 65 kW solar photovoltaic system onsite.


Dan Sweeney said...

this is great news,but..... a small correction/ reminder to note. The Sewer Commisison and Mr. O'Regan should be the credit for this aplication and follow through withtheir many tiring and not to mention 'Volunteer' actions in directing the project to meet its milestones. All the while taking positive action in the daily operations of the Sewer Plant and department in spite of the actions of others during these busy times. the correction, although it be minor, is that the plant is not going to be a new or larger capisity plant when this project is completed, just more modern. No plans to expand on the capacity or service ability are being addressed with this 'Retrofit' Project, just newer technology and processes to enable us to meet the ever growing permitting requirements that we face every day.

Dan Sweeney (on vacation and still working) ;)

Gillian Swart said...

Thanks, Dan - That slipped by me. Where are the proofreaders/fact checkers in Costello's office?

Sarah Swart said...

I have to say, as a resident of Gloucester, this news sucks. Gloucester's sewage treatment is so out of date that the city has for years been paying monthly fines for continuing to operate it. Spills regularly contaminate shellfish beds...and beaches. The city sewer lines are ancient, leaking, and untraceable (no one kept good records when the pipes were laid). The costs of the endless upgrades result in acceptance of decades-old standards for other public projects. The year-round residents constitute the tax base, which is to say, the city is broke, funded by out-of-work fishermen and underpaid service workers. Where is OUR $3m assistance package?