On April 22nd 2021 from 5-7PM, Neighbors Against Gas Plants, which is a grassroots volunteer group whose mission is to prevent the operation of SEPTA’s newly constructed “natural gas" (methane) burning power plant on their 4301 Wissahickon Avenue Midvale Complex property, is hosting a picket line event.
SEPTA has a contract with NORESCO which built and now operates the plant.
SEPTA’s Midvale property is located in Nicetown, 2 blocks from Germantown, directly across the street from E. Falls. Most but not all NAGP members reside among the 37,000 people in the surrounding mile.
The $26.8 million combined heat and power plant, (CHP) is designed to generate electricity for running regional train lines that pass through Wayne Junction, a few blocks away. Normally CHPs capture up to 90% of the waste heat and use it for heating buildings but SEPTA has only figured out heating the bus depot. We have not found any public document about this but have been told estimates (in different years) that only 5% or 10% of the waste heat will be repurposed. The rest of the waste heat will simply be released up the smoke stacks. Thus, as a CHP, it is not being used efficiently as the EPA assumes a CHP would be.
SEPTA’s on-site electricity production is not needed by regional rail commuters, because SEPTA already reliably gets electrical power from PECO (Philadelphia Electric Company.) The CHP is for 365 days/year- not a back-up system.
Neighbors Against Gas Plants, "Environmental Justice Earth Day - Neighbors Against Gas Plant Picket Line Event", contributed by Morgan Sarao, The Energy Rights Project, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 19 April 2021, accessed 1 March 2024. https://energyrights.info/content/environmental-justice-earth-day-neighbors-against-gas-plant-picket-line-event