Trash Fuels Power Feud

Some Waterbury residents are getting ready for a weekend protest against a proposed food waste energy plant at the old Anamet site in Waterbury.

"No one has ever built one this size in this country, we don't want to be the guinea pigs," said Steve Schrag, one of the concerned residents.

They don't want the facility on Washington Avenue, or anywhere else in the city and were looking forward to a bill that would squash the plans altogether. 

"Of course, we're very concerned what the ramifications would be here in the city of Waterbury.  We were hopeful this issue was behind us," said Waterbury Mayor Michael Jarjura.

Gov. M. Jodi Rell, who hasn't publicly supported either side, vetoed the bill, allowing the plans to go before the state Siting Council and the Department of Environmental Protection.

In her veto explanation, Rell said there's already a process for proposed energy facilities, so this one should be no different.

"If we allow decisions to be made on these projects outside of the statutorily delineated process, we undermine the process that we have put in place and invite additional special act legislation to approve or disapprove individual projects," she said.

But opponents of the project disagree.  They said Rell has already acknowledged that Waterbury has its fair share of power plants.

"Why should we even go through the process, why should we raise expectation when clearly we are beyond the saturation level right now," said state Sen. Joan Hartley, D-Waterbury.

Some people question the process itself.

"We need to have that process looked at because, while we respect the siting council and the D.P.U.C., we just want to have our own local boards also weighing in on the matter," Jarjura said.

Supporters of the project said it would revitalize a building that has been vacant for nearly a decade and would bring in tax dollars.

Contact Us