Central Maine Power and Emera Maine announced Thursday that the two companies have submitted a joint proposal to deliver enough clean energy to power at least a quarter-million homes in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island.
The proposal, called the Maine Renewable Energy Interconnect, would provide up to 1,200 megawatts of renewable energy from wind energy projects in northern Maine that are already in the planning and development phase. The project includes investments in the region’s bulk power system to add about 150 miles of new line, new substations and other improvements. The improvements would be paid for by utility customers in the states that issued the request for proposals in November.
“Our joint project creates environmental and economic value for Maine and the region,” Sara Burns, president and CEO of CMP, said in a written statement. “Bringing more renewables into the system will reduce emissions from burning fossil fuels and enhance price stability, energy security and supply diversity.”
Alan Richardson, Emera Maine’s president, said: “MREI offers a number of differentiating elements that we believe will be very attractive to the states that are seeking new sources of clean energy. MREI will be able to deliver that energy on time and at a competitive price because we are tapping our existing infrastructure.”
Richardson also noted that using existing rights-of-way for much of the pathway minimizes environmental impacts. “The MREI is a high-value, low-cost solution for the southern New England states’ need for clean energy with the advantages only companies with our resources can offer,” said Richardson.
Under the RFP, a consortium of agencies and electric utilities in Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island sought at least 5,000 gigawatt hours of clean energy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to improve air quality. Other energy providers across the region are also submitting bids to the consortium.