Thursday, May 07, 2009

John Carney's Firm Is Interested in Claymont Steel

Jack Markell, in his state of the state speech last week, mentioned that John Carney was working on a deal to build towers for offshore wind turbines at the Claymont Steel plant:
For Delaware, as the only state with a valid PPA [power purchase agreement] and easy access to all shore points off the East Coast, we must seize our advantage. Let’s work to ensure that the Claymont Steel Mill produces the steel for the windmill towers and foundations, not just for Delaware, but other projects as well. This is a project the former Lt. Governor John Carney and his team have worked hard on and I commend them for it.
Joe Biden mentioned it as well:
And most important, it's a way to build a platform -- build a platform for the economy of the future. John, it's not just the platforms you're going to build for these windmills; it goes much more than that.
Carney's firm, Transformative Technologies (TT) has two business groups that the firm believes could improve economic and environmental conditions at Claymont Steel. The first, called DelaWind, was set up to take on the wind tower project, hopefully not just for Bluewater, but for other east coast offshore wind projects as well. The second, called ReCoGen, uses combined cycle technology to increase the energy efficiency of industrial facilities.
Claymont Steel is considered antiquated; its Russian owners have not invested in significant upgrades for the plant since buying it a couple of years ago. TT's managers are convinced that ReCoGen could create enough savings to make the plant more competitive and finance some badly-needed emissions controls.

Metallic dust from the plant has plagued the community for years. The Claymont community has been monitoring air quality around the plant, using a grant from a previous owner and a national consultant to interpret the results. DNREC has a web page devoted to the long history of environmental problems at the steel plant.

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