New England’s electricity grid manager said yesterday it will allow Salem Harbor Power Station to close two coal-fired units in 2014 and proposed a fix to make the entire 60-year-old plant unneeded.
The decision by ISO New England follows plant owner Dominion Resources Inc.’s request in February to close the plant by June 2014. Dominion has said it won’t invest in upgrades at the four-unit, coal- and oil-fired plant, long targeted by environmentalists but valued by locals for jobs and tax revenues.
The ISO approved shuttering two of Salem’s coal-fired units. But it said the two larger units were still needed.
It also recommended a way to make the entire Salem plant unnecessary. The fix involves replacing six area 115-kilovolt transmission lines with larger wires that can carry more energy.