MURPHY, BLUMENTHAL URGE NRG ENERGY TO PRESERVE MANRESA ISLAND, HELP PROTECT LONG ISLAND SOUND

Senators: “The current situation on Manresa Island must change.”

HARTFORD – After hearing from Norwalk residents who are concerned that contamination at the former power plant site on Manresa Island could endanger the long-term health of Long Island Sound, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) requested that NRG Energy, Inc. – the company that owns Manresa Island – participate in efforts to study and preserve the island. In a letter to Judith Lagano, Vice President of Asset Management at NRG Energy, Murphy and Blumenthal emphasized the importance of Manresa Island, and requested that NRG senior management meet with Norwalk residents and other concerned parties to discuss the future of Manresa Island.

“The current situation on Manresa Island must change. As you know, the Manresa Power Plant closed in 2013 but burned coal and oil during its operational life. After the plant closed, the Manresa Association formed and began working to clean up Manresa Island. However, NRG should be an active partner in this effort,” said the senators. “It is incumbent on NRG as the property owner to work collaboratively with the community in a manner that will mutually benefit all parties. We strongly urge NRG to participate in efforts to study and rehabilitate Manresa Island, provide transparent information about Manresa Island that would be beneficial in those efforts, and participate in an initial meeting on rehabilitation efforts.”

The full text of the letter is available online and below:

NRG Energy, Inc.
Attn: Judith Lagano
804 Carnegie Center
Princeton, NJ 08540-6213

Dear Ms. Lagano:

We write to ask that you engage with the Manresa Association and the City of Norwalk in efforts to study and rehabilitate the Manresa power plant located on Manresa Island in Long Island Sound. The Manresa Association and citizens of the City of Norwalk, concerned about the long-term health of Long Island Sound and its coastline, are anxious to see Manresa Island cleaned up and preserved. We strongly urge NRG to participate in efforts to study and rehabilitate Manresa Island, provide transparent information about Manresa Island that would be beneficial in those efforts, and participate in an initial meeting on rehabilitation efforts by June 2017.

The current situation on Manresa Island must change. The status quo does not benefit NRG, the community of Norwalk, the economic future of the city, or the quality of the surrounding environment. It is incumbent on NRG as the property owner to work collaboratively with the community in a manner that will mutually benefit all parties.

As you know, the Manresa Power Plant closed in 2013 but burned coal and oil during its operational life. After the plant closed, the Manresa Association formed and began working to clean up Manresa Island. In order to determine what environmental rehabilitation efforts are needed, the Manresa Association and the City of Norwalk funded an Economic Impact Analysis (EIA) of Manresa Island. The Norwalk City Council unanimously voted to fund half of this analysis report and the Manresa Association is funding the other half of the study. This study, conducted by Fitzgerald & Halliday, is set to be completed by the end of 2017.

We appreciate the willingness of NRG to begin engaging with the EIA process by allowing a site visit to the Manresa property. We understand that NRG is also going to be having meetings with the city of Norwalk to update them on the situation at the Manresa Island site. However, NRG should be continue to be an active participant in the entire EIA process , working with Fitzgerald & Halliday, the Manresa Association, and the City of Norwalk. We respectfully ask that NRG have, by June 2017, senior management attend an initial meeting with the Manresa Association, the City of Norwalk, and Fitzgerald & Halliday to discuss how NRG will continue to be involved in the EIA. NRG has relevant information about the island and their perspective would be beneficial to the analysis. NRG’s continued participation will yield a more complete and useful end product, which is clearly in the interest of all parties.

Thank you for your continued attention to this issue and your partnership in efforts to rehabilitate Manresa Island for the benefit of all parties.

Sincerely,

Christopher S. Murphy
United States Senator

Richard Blumenthal
United States Senator