Northern Pass Terminated from Mass. Clean Energy Project

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Editor’s note: This story will be updated. At 10:54 a.m. added Northern Pass’ response: “The following is our statement regarding today’s decision by the Electric Distribution Companies. We remain committed to the success of the project, and will pursue all options for making it a reality.” See all InDepthNH.org’s Northern Pass coverage here.

The Electric Distributions Companies (“EDCs”) have terminated the conditional selection of the Northern Pass Hydro project (“NPT Hydro”), according to a news release from Mass. Clean Energy at 10:04 a.m. Wednesday.

The EDCs are in the process of concluding contract negotiations with the New England Clean Energy Connect 100% Hydro project (“NECEC Hydro”) and intend to execute agreements with NECEC Hydro for submittal to the Department of Public Utilities, assuming negotiations are concluded successfully.

Response from Jack Savage of the Society for the Protection of NH Forests: “Massachusetts came to the only logical conclusion, that Northern Pass won’t be built through New Hampshire, and isn’t an option going forward. The extension cord is now unplugged. The likelihood of Northern Pass as proposed finding a path forward in New Hampshire is slim to none. To think no means anything other than no is corporate wishful thinking.”

Response from Kris Pastoriza: “I never thought the word “terminated” could sound so good. I wonder why TDI/NECPL, underground, permitted and with community support, was not chosen.”

Click here for Portland Press Herald story

Northern Pass responds:

Posted on March 28th, 2018 by 

The following is our statement regarding today’s decision by the Electric Distribution Companies. We remain committed to the success of the project, and will pursue all options for making it a reality.

We understand today’s decision by the Electric Distribution Companies (EDCs) to terminate the conditional selection of the Northern Pass Transmission hydro proposal, given the status of the New Hampshire permitting process.  Despite recent delays, we continue to believe that Northern Pass is the best project for the region and New Hampshire, and we intend to pursue all options for making it a reality.

Eversource and Hydro-Québec remain committed to the success of the project.  No other project has obtained the necessary approvals from federal permitting authorities in the U.S. and Canada, and secured agreements with major contractors and the IBEW.

It is because of these achievements that Northern Pass was originally selected as the top bid in the Massachusetts Clean Energy solicitation.

While the decision by the N.H. Site Evaluation Committee has caused delay, we will continue to urge its members to fully evaluate the required statutory criteria, as well as thoroughly consider all of the conditions that could provide the basis for granting approval.

At a time when the region needs new and diverse sources of clean energy, it is vitally important that projects like Northern Pass are considered fully and efficiently and without unnecessary delay.

Northern Pass has received the following approvals:

State Approvals

  • Department of Environmental Services
    • Wetland final decision
    • Shoreland Protection final decision
    • Alteration of Terrain final decision
    • Section 401 Water Quality certificate
  • Department of Transportation
  • PUC Authorization to Commence Business as a Public Utility
  • PUC Authorization to Cross Public Lands and Waters
  • PUC Approval of PSNH Lease

Federal Approvals

  • DOE Final Environmental Impact Statement
  • DOE Record of Decision
  • Presidential Permit
  • U.S. Forest Service Final Record of Decision

Canadian Approvals

  • Québec Provincial Permit
  • Canadian National Energy Board

Three Approvals Remain

  • NH Site Evaluation Committee – Certificate of Site and Facility
  • U.S. Forest Service Special Use Permit (draft issued; final permit expected soon)
  • U.S. Army Corps Section 404 Permit (expected following issuance of SEC permit)

Northern Pass Cliffhanger: No Decision Late Tuesday on Mass. Negotiations

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