[NEWS] University of Maine Energy Proposal Calls for Biomass, Solar
– by Tux Turkel, May 22, 2018, Portland Press Herald
The University of Maine in Orono would get much of its heat and electricity from an on-campus Renewable Energy Center fueled by locally harvested wood and a huge solar array, according to a plan being negotiated by the university system and Honeywell International.
The outline of Honeywell’s power contract proposal is contained in a document prepared for the University of Maine System last year in response to requests for proposals to transition most of the Orono campus from natural gas and fuel oil to renewable energy. Honeywell’s proposal was a runner-up in the original RFP process. The financial section is heavily redacted and omits any information about the cost of the power contract, although it has been estimated to be worth more than $100 million.
The document had been requested for months by the Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram, which has been chronicling the controversy about prior plans to power the campus with wood energy from an abandoned paper mill in neighboring Old Town. It’s noteworthy now because, although the project design and contract terms could be modified in negotiations, the details at least sketch a picture of how UMaine is seeking to move forward on a major energy undertaking.