Governor Martin O'Malley today announced the State of Maryland, in partnership with the University System of Maryland, will enter into a power purchase agreement with Green Planet Power Solutions to purchase a minimum of 10 MW of electricity produced from animal waste in Caroline County. The contract, awarded via the competitive Clean Bay Power process, promotes the use of renewable energy, reduces Maryland's contribution to agricultural runoff in the Chesapeake Bay, and encourages job creation while promoting Maryland's farm industry.
"Clean Bay Power is a prime example of how Maryland is leading the nation's efforts in clean energy, sustainability and a growing green jobs sector," said Governor O'Malley. "It is only through a diverse, renewable fuel mix that we will be able to reach our aggressive goal of generating 20 percent renewable energy by 2022, create jobs through innovation, and protect our precious environment."
The Green Planet Power Solutions project, which will be built in Federalsburg and use chicken litter as its primary fuel source, will create 200 construction jobs and 24 permanent jobs, reduce 230,000 pounds of nitrogen runoff annually, and save Maryland between $53.2 M and $80.0 M in avoided energy costs over the fifteen year contract period.
"We are confident that Green Planet Power Solutions will move Maryland closer to our renewable energy goals," said Department of General Services' Secretary Alvin C. Collins. "Obtaining electricity from poultry manure or animal waste helps Maryland government to reach its goal of generating 20 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources, all the while improving Bay water quality and supporting the agriculture industry."
The Clean Bay Power project is one of several initiatives that the O'Malley-Brown Administration is pursuing to assist farmers with creating energy and heat from animal waste and becoming more energy independent, all while improving the health of the Bay. For example, the proposed FY14 budget contains $2.5 million in capital funds for manure to energy projects with proven technology, to be administered by the Department of Agriculture, which will be used to help farmers bring proven energy technologies onto their farms. Another $500 thousand has been proposed for the development of new manure waste to energy technologies. Maryland Environmental Service continues to develop an anaerobic digester, fueled by chicken litter, which will provide electricity and heat to the Maryland Department of Corrections. The Maryland Energy Administration and the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development recently announced the 17 recipients of the Kathleen A. P. Mathias Agriculture Energy Efficiency Program, which provides $1.4 million in grants to cover a portion of the cost of energy efficiency upgrades for selected farms and agribusinesses.
The Clean Bay Power project is an effort by the Maryland Department of General Services, in coordination with the Maryland Departments of Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment, the Maryland Energy Administration, and the University System of Maryland.