The Maine Public Utilities Commission has issued a decision to move forward with two large projects that will promote renewable energy development in northern Maine and beyond: a 345 kV transmission line to connect renewable energy resources located in northern Maine with the ISO-NE grid, and a large wind power project that will use that transmission line.
In November 2022, the commission issued conditional approval while it explored partnership options to help offset costs to Maine ratepayers. Since then, Massachusetts has formally offered to partner with Maine in the project.
With Massachusetts partnering in 40% of the project, the estimated net costs to Maine ratepayers would be about $1 billion, or about a dollar per month for an average residential customer. Costs could be reduced further if additional partners participate in the project.
“These projects will provide significant benefits to Maine and the region, including jobs during construction, property tax revenue for local communities, and environmental benefits from new renewable energy displacing fossil fuels,” says PUC Chair Philip L. Bartlett II.
The influx of renewable energy into the regional grid will also place downward pressure on electricity prices, benefitting consumers in Maine and throughout New England.
Longroad Energy will be developing the 1 GW King Pine Wind project, and LS Power has been selected to spearhead the transmission project.