Maine Public Utilities Commission Approves New England Clean Energy Connect
Augusta, ME — April 11, 2019 — The New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC) received a key state approval from the Maine Public Utilities Commission (PUC). The Commission voted to grant Central Maine Power’s petition for a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity for its proposal to build an electric transmission line from the Maine/Quebec border to Lewiston, Maine.
“We are thrilled that the Commission has voted in favor of this project. This approval marks a major milestone for the NECEC and for the region’s efforts to secure a future of clean, reliable energy,” said Doug Herling, president and CEO of Central Maine Power. “Today’s decision confirms the New England Clean Energy Connect will deliver environmental, economic, energy security, and other benefits for Maine and for consumers throughout New England.”
The NECEC is planned to provide 1,200 megawatts of transmission capacity and deliver clean, renewable electricity to the New England Grid from hydro-power resources in Québec. The Commission’s decision comes at the end of an in-depth 18-month analysis weighing the impacts and benefits of the project for Maine consumers.
Central Maine Power proposed the NECEC in response to a solicitation by Massachusetts utilities in response to that state’s Global Warming Solutions Act, which set goals to increase supplies of electricity from clean, renewable sources for Massachusetts consumers. The Commission’s decision comes at the end of an in-depth analysis by the Commission staff and consultants to weigh the impacts and benefits of the project for Maine consumers. The Commission’s findings directly rebut arguments from parties representing the electricity generation industry that oppose policymakers’ efforts to address climate change and the region’s heavy dependence on costly fossil fuel energy supplies.
“Addressing the twin challenges of climate change and energy affordability will require a sustained, regional commitment to action,” said Herling. “The need for progress should always be weighed against the impacts and benefits of every project, and the NECEC is no exception. In this case, we believe the Commission gave due consideration to all perspectives, and as this decision shows, the balance strongly favors our project. ”
About CMP: Central Maine Power Company (CMP), a subsidiary of AVANGRID, Inc., is Maine’s largest electricity transmission and distribution utility. Established in 1899, CMP operates approximately 23,500 miles of distribution lines and 2,900 miles of transmission lines. It serves approximately 624,000 customers across 346 communities in central and southern Maine. For more information, visit cmpco.com.
About AVANGRID: AVANGRID, Inc. (NYSE: AGR) is a leading, sustainable energy company with approximately $32 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states. AVANGRID has two primary lines of business: Avangrid Networks and Avangrid Renewables. Avangrid Networks owns eight electric and natural gas utilities, serving 3.2 million customers in New York and New England. Avangrid Renewables owns and operates 7.1 gigawatts of electricity capacity, primarily through wind power, with a presence in 22 states across the United States. AVANGRID employs approximately 6,500 people. AVANGRID supports the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals and was named among the World’s Most Ethical Companies in 2019 by the Ethisphere Institute. For more information, visit avangrid.com.