Gillibrand lobbies state lawmakers to keep Fort Drum’s biomass plant open

Published: Mar. 15, 2023 at 5:50 PM EDT
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FORT DRUM, New York (WWNY) - Coming down to the wire, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand had conversations with leaders in the state Assembly and Senate Wednesday to try to keep Fort Drum’s biomass plant from closing.

New York’s energy policy doesn’t view biomass as renewable, so any tax incentives or credits won’t be made available to the owner of the plant, ReEnergy.

ReEnergy announced it would shut the plant down at the end of March.

Gillibrand is lobbying the state legislature in hopes of getting ReEnergy a waiver allowing this specific plant to continue to get renewable energy tax incentives.

Gillibrand says the fact that the facility provides Fort Drum with 100 percent of its energy is important for national security.

“I sit on the Armed Services and Intelligence committees and the importance of having Fort Drum off the grid if necessary is a huge asset for Fort Drum,” said Gillibrand (D. - NY).

The biomass plant burns wood and wood chips as fuel.

Less than 1 percent of the fuel the plant uses is from tire-derived fuel or shredded tires.