This appears to claim that the $1.4 Billion CMP upgrade (Maine Power Reliability Program) had nothing to do with wind power. In fact, the CMP upgrade was a ratepayer funded gift to the wind industry. Essentially, ratepayers bought the wind industry its shipping system. See:http://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/maine-electricity-rates... for more on this.
Maine Voices: Transmission deficit is holding back wind in Maine
Five large onshore wind projects have been canceled because there was no way for customers to get the power.
...........However, as Maine has discovered since 2008, planning energy projects is the easy part. The difficult part is building transmission infrastructure and reshaping the state’s energy system to deliver new renewable energy to customers in a cost-effective way. Maine’s onshore wind efforts over the last decade provide a cautionary tale as officials look to the ocean for a fresh renewable energy source.......................
The largest impediment to the development of wind in Maine has been the lack of an adequate transmission system.
At least five large wind projects were cancelled because transmission constraints prevented their electricity from reaching customers.....................Transmission bottlenecks weren’t the only thing that prevented these five projects, but they played a fundamental role. The central problem was one of geography: Maine’s largest wind resources are located the north, while the state’s only long-distance high voltage transmission lines are located to the south and east. Even this existing infrastructure has been plagued by congestion as power moves from north to south. In fact, Aroostook County – the location of three of the cancelled wind projects – has no connection to the U.S. grid at all, but instead is connected to the power system of New Brunswick, Canada. .........................
After Maine set ambitious wind energy goals in 2008, wind farm developers submitted a raft of project proposals. They found a power system unable to support their new generation, and only a handful of planned projects ever took place. Like any infrastructure project, new transmission brings difficult cost and environmental choices that require extensive cooperation and joint planning. But transmission also serves as an enabler, creating jobs, investment, and clean energy opportunities.
The five stalled onshore projects – King Pine, County Line, Somerset Wind, Moose-Alder, and Number Nine – each required some degree of new transmission infrastructure. Multiple proposals were put forward to accomplish this, with each rejected or delayed at various stages of development. The Maine Power Reliability Program, a $1.4 billion construction project completed between 2010 and 2015, improved parts of Maine’s transmission infrastructure but did not consider the needs of new onshore wind projects or lay the groundwork for future upgrades......................................
Iain Addleton is a summer associate at Anbaric Development Partners in Wakefield, Massachusetts, an energy transmission developer. He recently graduated from the Fletcher School at Tufts University with a master’s degree in energy policy and business strategy.
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