I care about Maine’s environment and, more importantly, our future. I spend every spare minute hiking, kayaking and exploring Maine’s incredible outdoor playground.

Maine’s dependence on fossil fuels is a serious threat to the Maine we all love, from our coast, lakes, mountains, and forests. No other state in New England relies on petroleum as much as Maine.

A great first step is the New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC). This project will bring 1,200 megawatts of clean, renewable hydropower to Maine. That’s enough to fuel the equivalent of 70,000 Maine homes. It will reduce carbon emissions in the region by 3 million metric tons per year, roughly the equivalent of removing 700,000 gas-guzzling cars from the road.

The benefits from the NECEC stretch far into the future. The project comes with significant financial commitments to build out Maine’s EV infrastructure and efficiency upgrades to our electric grid.

Best of all, with the goal of protecting the untouched forest of Western Maine, the project was specifically engineered to leave a very light footprint on the region. Two-thirds of the new transmission lines will run along existing power lines. The balance – around 54 miles – will be no wider than the length of a bowling alley and will sit within an area where commercial logging has occurred for a century. Not a single tree on Maine’s public lands will be disturbed.

The NECEC is a win for Maine’s environment.

Emma Pope Welch

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