DALTON AND NORWOOD, MASS.—GZA GeoEnvironmental Inc., recently assisted Crane & Company with a feasibility study and grant application with the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative Renewable Energy Trust that will allow Crane to rehabilitate a small hydropower system at its Dalton manufacturing facility. GZA investigated the feasibility of hydroelectric power generation at two existing dams and will now work with Crane to design and construct a rehabilitated small hydropower generation facility at the Byron Weston Defiance Mill and the associated Byron Weston Dam No. 2.
The proposed renewable energy project involves replacement of existing turbines with a new turbine, installation of new electrical generation and control equipment, and modification of ancillary civil structures. The project will provide electricity to Crane, a manufacturer of paper since 1801.
GZA has assisted a number of clients in Massachusetts by making projects viable through grants from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborate Renewable Energy Trust. "The Renewable Energy Trust is pleased to support this and other feasibility studies for companies interested in rehabilitating existing dams," said Warren Leon, director of the Trust. "Hydroelectric power is an important part of the Commonwealth’s clean energy supply, and these rehabilitations can be a great opportunity for businesses."
"Massachusetts has over 3,000 existing dams that have been idle for decades," said William R. Beloff, president and CEO of GZA. "The renewed concern for the environment and the cost of fossil fuels has led to a real interest in hydropower. These projects are also important to the community because they will result in the repair and ongoing maintenance of these existing dams."