Residents resist new power plant in Burrillville

A rendering of Invenergy's proposed power plant in Burrillville. (credit: Invenergy)

BURRILLVILLE, R.I. (WPRI) — About 100 people turned out to Wednesday night’s Town Council meeting in Burrillville. Not a single one of them spoke in favor of a proposed natural gas power plant.

“We already have the largest power plant in the state in Burrillville. Why do we need another one? It just defies comprehension,” resident Erin Olkowski told the council. “We’re being asked to do too much.”

The proposed plant is called the Clear River Energy Center, and still needs approval from a state board. Invenergy plans to spend $700 million to build the facility, which it says will create 300 jobs, and bring major tax revenue to town.

The project has the backing of Gov. Gina Raimondo, who believes it will help lower energy bills in the region.

“Governor, we invite you to our lovely little town. We’d love to chat and get our questions answered,” Donna Woods said into the Eyewitness News camera.  “We’d really appreciate your time. This is a big move.”

The Burrillville Town Council has no say in whether the power plant is built in their community, and has not taken a formal position on the issue.

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