Assessing the Environmental Impact of the Siting of a Natural Gas Power Plant

An Analysis Group team led by Senior Advisor Susan Tierney and Managing Principal Pavel Darling prepared and submitted testimony before the Massachusetts Energy Facilities Siting Board (EFSB) regarding the siting of a natural gas power plant. Both Dr. Tierney and Mr. Darling provided analysis and written and oral testimony before the EFSB in support of Exelon’s application to construct a highly efficient natural gas combustion turbine (CT) plant in Medway, Massachusetts.

The Analysis Group team quantified and summarized the environmental benefits associated with replacing older and less efficient units with the proposed West Medway Power Station facility. Dr. Tierney and Mr. Darling’s analyses included a qualitative review of policy developments, as well as a quantitative analysis showing the greenhouse gas (GHG) impacts of including the Medway unit in the New England system operations. Dr. Tierney and Mr. Darling found that the proposed facility would displace the output and related higher carbon emissions at existing less-efficient and higher-emitting resources that were also more costly to operate. The EFSB ultimately approved the siting of the facility.