New York says yes to Quebec hydropower as Maine waffles

Quebec wants to sell more of its enormous amounts of hydropower to the Northeast U.S., which wants more renewable energy. The problem is that the electricity has to get from there to here and nobody wants big, ugly power lines near them – “near” being defined as anything you might see on a clear day if you stand on the highest local hilltop.

New Hampshire rejected a gigawatt line because a portion cut through some pristine woodlands. Maine seemed to accept an alternative but last-minute opposition of the perfect-is-the-enemy-of-good variety might block it with a statewide ballot initiative. Both states also fretted that Massachusetts was benefiting from the lines, as if we weren’t all in the same power grid and as if we don’t benefit from natural-gas pipelines that run through Massachusetts.

Meanwhile, owners of gas-fired power plants are delighted.

Now New York has just said yes to a very similar project, called the Champlain Hudson Power Express, carrying 1,200 megawatts down from Quebec to NYC. We’ll see if it actually happens.

New England line opponents might say that the New York proposal is different because much of it will run underwater (Lake Champlain and the Hudson River) instead of requiring trees to be cut down. But I’m sure the New England opponents would have freaked out if the lines had been proposed under Moosehead Lake or the Connecticut River.

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Comment by Dan McKay on September 25, 2021 at 8:44am

"The Act requires that the Commission issue an RFP for transmission to be secured by contracts with one or more transmission and distribution utilities, effectively forcing ratepayers to give generation developers a free ride with respect to interconnection costs. This would represent an unprecedented subsidy to those generators, whereas existing generators throughout New England have had to pay for their interconnection requirements."  ( Calpine Comment to PUC ) THIS TRANSMISSION PROJECT COULD EASILY COST RATEPAYERS OVER A BILLION DOLLARS AND INTERUPT THE MAINE GRID  OPERATIONS ( MY COMMENT )

Comment by Dan McKay on September 25, 2021 at 8:31am

"as with other transmission developments, Versant expects the transmission developer(s) or project(s) selected by the Commission would need to obtain a certificate of public convenience and necessity (“CPCN”) before building the transmission facilities."

Comment by Art Brigades on September 24, 2021 at 6:15pm

Maine is bass-backwards. Instead of these low-impact/high benefit hydro power lines, we want 1200 MWof wind. And transmission. It's happening now at the PUC:  Read the submissions. They're chilling.

Comment by Dan McKay on September 24, 2021 at 3:45pm

President Biden’s climate policies and the House Democrats’ reconciliation bill will decimate U.S. energy industries along with millions of associated jobs while saddling consumers with skyrocketing prices and electricity blackouts.

Comment by Thinklike A. Mountain on September 24, 2021 at 2:45pm


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.”

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

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