Russell Biomass power plant in Russell, Massachusetts, has secured a final Clean Water Act permit from the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The issuance of the final national pollutant discharge elimination system permit follows the a science-based review conducted by EPA.

The facility is proposed to be constructed adjacent to the Westfield River, and to withdraw water from and discharge water back into the river.

The permit, which becomes effective on 1 July 2012, requires the facility to limit discharge of heat and other effluents to the water, and monitoring requirements to ensure the protection of aquatic organisms and habitat quality in the river.

The EPA permit also requires the facility to ensure the entrainment and impingement of fish and other river organisms is reduced with the requirement to use closed cycle cooling towers.

The permit for the power plant was first proposed in 2009 and underwent a formal public review and comment period.