Northern Pass Enters a New Phase

Tom Irwin | @TomIrwinNH

The Northern Pass transmission project has entered a new phase, as the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee begins an extensive state permitting process for the controversial project.

Northern Pass as proposed will span 192 miles, traveling from the Canada/U.S. border in Pittsburg, through New Hampshire’s north country, down the spine of the state to Concord, and, ultimately, to Deerfield. The project would be a massive undertaking, one that the New Hampshire Attorney General’s Counsel for the Public recently described as being “of unprecedented scope for New Hampshire” and having “a lasting impact on its citizens and resources.”

The proposal would import up to 1,090 MWs of hydro-electric power from Québec, raising serious concerns not only about impacts on our landscape and communities, but also about New Hampshire’s energy future. At a time when the biggest threat facing our communities is climate change, it’s imperative that our energy choices advance clean solutions – like the development of local renewable energy – and not undermine them.

Starting next week, Northern Pass will be holding a series of information sessions about the proposed project. The sessions provide an opportunity for the public to learn more about the proposal and the Site Evaluation Committee’s review process, and to ask questions. Sessions will be taking place:

  • Merrimack County: January 11, 2016 at 6 p.m., Franklin Opera House, 316 Central Street, Franklin, NH
  • Rockingham County: January 13, 2016 at 6 p.m., Londonderry High School, 295 Mammoth Road, Londonderry, NH
  • Belknap County: January 14, 2016 at 6 p.m., Lake Opechee Inn and Spa, 62 Doris Ray Court, Laconia, NH
  • Coös County: January 20, 2016 at 6 p.m., Mountain View Grand Resort & Spa, 101 Mountain View Road, Whitefield, NH
  • Grafton County: January 21, 2016 at 6 p.m., The Mountain Club on Loon Resort and Spa, 90 Loon Mountain Road, Lincoln, NH

The information sessions are an early step in the Site Evaluation Committee’s process and will be followed by a series of public hearings before the Committee. At least one public hearing will take place in each of the five counties affected by the project (Grafton, Coos, Belknap, Rockingham and Merrimack).

The dates for the hearings – which will provide the public the chance to comment directly on the project – have not been finalized. Once they are, we will let you know when and where you can make your voice heard on Northern Pass.

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