at the Citizen Power Alliance 2010 Wind Conference
Power line plan unveiled
|AUGUSTA, Maine - Two utility companies unveiled plans Tuesday for a $1.9 billion overhaul of Maine’s electricity transmission lines aimed at bolstering reliability and encouraging large-scale wind power development in Aroostook County.|
Central Maine Power and Maine Public Service Co. filed applications on Tuesday with state regulators for two massive transmission line projects. If approved as proposed, the projects would likely be paid for by all New England energy consumers with Maine ratepayers accounting for about 8 percent of the cost, officials said.
The first project would build an additional, 345-kilovolt transmission line along the existing CMP corridor, passing through nearly 80 communities from Orrington to Newington, N.H. The $1.4 billion expansion is part of a long-term plan to upgrade the state’s aging power infrastructure, which studies predict could encounter serious reliability problems as early as 2012 without major fixes.
The second project would connect northern Maine communities to the New England power grid. While such a connection has been discussed for years, it was regarded as economically unfeasible until recently when Aroostook County became the hot spot for potential wind farm development in the state.
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