CONCORD, N.H. – A conservation group working to block a 180-mile electrical project from Canada into southern New Hampshire announced Monday it is seeking to raise $2.5 million to pay for conservation easements on nearly 1,900 acres to disrupt the project.

The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests said it has negotiated agreements to buy the easements with landowners in Coos County and must raise the money by Oct. 31.

Northern Pass Transmission would build, own and operate transmission lines while leasing them to Hydro-Quebec to transmit 1,200 megawatts of electricity into the New England Power pool. The project would run from Pittsburg to Deerfield with 140 miles on existing right-of-way and 40 miles through scenic sections of the state’s North Country.

“Northern Pass’s intended route through Coos County would scar some of New Hampshire’s most scenic forested and agricultural landscape with unsightly towers and power lines,” Society President Jane Difley said Monday, noting that 30 towns have voted to oppose the project. Conserving the 1,900 acres would be another step toward compelling the project to look at other alternatives, she said.

The Society “has used this project as a convenient fund-raising tool. We see today’s announcement as more of the same,” said Northern Pass spokesman Martin Murray. “They’ve tried and failed to stop the project. We will continue to work with willing landowners because New Hampshire and the region need the clean energy, hundreds of jobs and many economic benefits it will deliver to residents for decades to come.”

But project critics say other states like Connecticut would benefit from the cheap hydropower, and that the additional power is not vital to New Hampshire.

A new state law prohibits public utilities from using eminent domain for projects not directly related to New Hampshire power needs. Northern Pass says it already owns the right of way up to the north of Grafton and it’s attempting to purchase land or easements for the rest of the way. It faces stringent opposition from many North Country residents.

Northern Pass had looked to buy 5,800 acres surrounding the Balsams Grand Hotel in Dixville Notch for as much as $3 million. Instead, the Niel Tillotston Trust, which controls the parcel, accepted the Society’s $850,000 offer for 7,700 acres as a way to keep Northern Pass out.