The New England States Committee on Electricity’s (NESCOE) “New England Governors’ Renewable Energy Blueprint” issued in 2009 concluded that in order for the New England States to meet their renewable energy goals, new transmission needs to be constructed in the region. Green Line will expand the transmission grid in New England and help to deliver competitively priced non-carbon emitting resources in Maine and eastern Canada. Access to these resources is essential if the New England states are going to meet their renewable portfolio standards (RPS) and Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) goals in a reliable and cost effective manner.
See too the Black & Veatch report prepared for NESCOE that includes an analysis of 1200 MW imports from New Brunswick.
Minimal Environmental Impacts
Green Line’s design, development and operation are intended to minimize adverse impacts on the environment. By confining its terrestrial segment as much as possible to an existing right of way and installing more than half its length as an underwater cable, Green Line minimizes the adverse environmental impacts associated with new greenfield overhead transmission lines capable of transmitting the same amount of energy between Maine and Boston. Overhead DC lines require a much narrower right-of-way than AC lines carrying the same amount of power. Converter stations located at the each end of the transmission line are simple low-rise buildings whose exterior can be designed to be compatible with the surrounding area.
Supports Renewable Energy Development in Maine
Green Line will support the development of renewable energy resources in Maine, with an associated increase in jobs and tax base. Maine has New England’s greatest potential for renewable energy development, particularly in the areas of wind, biomass, and tidal power. By bypassing the existing AC grid in Maine, renewable energy that flows over Green Line will not compete for limited transmission space in the rest of Maine.
By enabling large scale development of resources in a single project, Green Line creates an economy of scale that helps drive down the cost of each kilowatt of energy produced and transmitted, thus providing a cost effective way for the New England states to meet their RPS and greenhouse gas reduction goals.
Increases Fuel Diversity
By enabling the development and delivery of more of non-fossil generation in New England, Green Line will help reduce the region’s growing dependence on natural gas and thus help to provide a more reliable mix of fuels.