Central Maine Power Co. is ramping up publicity around its bid to bring electricity from Canada through Maine and down to Massachusetts, saying it’s the cheapest alternative.
Massachusetts is looking for as much as 1,200 megawatts of electricity from renewable energy sources, and many stakeholders say the Bay State’s RFP puts an emphasis on energy from Canada’s massive Hydro-Quebec dam system. Bulk transmission systems are being proposed under Lake Champlain in Vermont and through New Hampshire’s White Mountains, some of it underground.
CMP’s proposal would sluice the energy from Beattie Township in a northwestern corner of Maine through the Forks to Lewiston and then south, but until now CMP has not released a firm cost figure. Now CEO Sara Burns says it would cost $950 million — $650 million less than the announced cost of the next cheapest competitor for the Hydro-Quebec link.
“We’re building overhead in a controlled route, which is the least expensive solution,” she says. “If you take those messages and add them up I think most people in the business would know, ‘Hmm, that’s probably the least-expensive solution.’“
Burns says that Massachusetts consumers would pay the entire bill. Massachusetts regulators will make their choice early next year.