Block Island to temporarily go back to diesel-generated power

Block Island, RI- Block Island’s new wind farm system has taken a long 5 years of pitching and planning. Now with the plan finally finished, and construction planned for 2022, diesel powered engines need to be used for the time being.

BIPCo is beginning a voltage conversion plan that will span several years, starting in 2022. BIPCo president Jeffery Wright proposed a timeline October 28th at the Block Island Utility District Board of Commissioners. Phase one will be converting the substation the New Harbor Circuit, and other circuits. More circuits will be upgraded over the following five to six years. Phase one is estimated to cost around $1.3 million and will be financed with a CFC loan if possible. The Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission will also need to endow the loan as it will be long-term

There will be large upgrades to the transmission system, increasing the efficiency by double. This new system will increase voltage regulation and decrease line losses. William Young has made a gracious donation of several Level 3 charging stations for electric motor vehicles.  BIPCo President Jeffery Wright told the Utility District Board of Commissioners that he and office manager Tracy Fredericks had received several phone calls over the summer from visitors looking for a charging station for their vehicles. Wright also said he got many phone calls from owners of rental homes concerned about tenants charging their vehicles and the resultant electric costs.

Young’s Idea was to pay $15,000 personally, and then raise another $15,000 through funding by donations. This plan became stunted when it was realized that BIPCo would have to go through several tariff creating, filing, and approving laws by the Rhode Island PUC. Wright says he hopes to have a charging station up and running, somehow, by next summer in order to accommodate visitors with electric vehicles.

A cable splice was planned for November 6th, but has been postponed to a later unknown date.

Categories: News, Rhode Island