Turbines to Turn Again

Canton eyes water power from two dams

The Farmington River that crashes through Canton once provided the energy to make axes and mauls sold around the world.

Now the Collins Company is long gone but two of its dams could be restored to generate electricity again, town officials said.

"We'll clean it up and put it back online," said Dick Barlow, the first selectman. "We're looking at an opportunity primarily to generate clean, green energy, which is something that everyone is crying out for."

Barlow hopes Washington will cry out for his town's power and provide subsidies to make it cost-effective. He figures each dam will cost $5 million to operate, but the total annual revenue would only amount to, at best, $200,000.

To get the rights to the water quickly takes an act of Congress, said Rep. Chris Murphy, (D) 5th district, who joined Barlow at the riverside.

"I think President Obama and his administration are going to be looking very favorably upon projects like this," said Murphy.

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