Brayton Point Power Station set to close for good

SOMERSET, Mass. (WPRI) — After more than 50 years of supplying power to hundreds of thousands of New England homes, the Brayton Point Power Station will shut down for good at midnight Wednesday.

Having long been considered one of the dirtiest power plants in Massachusetts, many environmentalists are celebrating the closing of the Somerset landmark. Others, however, including Town Administrator Richard Brown, say it’s an unfortunate change.

“We have an identity as being a community that generates power for the region,” said Brown. “We have used that power to generate revenue for our community, so we’re not happy about this. We’re upset.”

Brown said the plant is Somerset’s largest taxpayer, supplying about 8 percent of the town’s annual budget.

“For the last two years we’ve received $4.25 million in revenue for the operations at Brayton Point Power Station,” he explained.

Money isn’t the only concern as the plant closes, though. Jobs are also on the line, according to a spokesperson for Dynegy, which has owned the plant for more than two years.

“There’s approximately 170 employees,” said David Onufer. “Some have already joined other Dynegy plants, others are currently interviewing for other Dynegy positions, several have already moved on to other companies, and others have accepted a voluntary severance package offered by Dynegy.”

As for the plant itself, Onufer said Dynegy is looking to sell.

“No immediate plans for the Brayton Point site,” he added. “We’ll continue to listen to interested parties.”

There are no demolition plans in place for the site, according to the town, while Brown said they plan to work with Dynegy to find a new use for the facility.