Buried Lines Alert

 I attended the Northern Pass Open House at Loon Mountain in Lincoln on 9/16. The event consisted of several displays promoted by NP employees who didn’t seem to know much about the cost of burying the lines. A “more experienced” employee was quickly called over to snow me with a deluge of misinformation delivered passionately. I admit to being fascinated by his performance, waving his arms as he went all around the barn.

 He didn’t tell me about the work of TransEnergieUS, Hydro-Quebec’s transmission division that is involved with the longest underground transmission line in the world at 110 mi, the Murraylink in Australia. He didn’t tell me that SNC-Lavalin, a  Canadian infrastructure engineering and managing company became a shareholder in the project. SNC-Lavalin partnered with TransEnergieUS to develop the Murraylink.

 Several studies confirm the reliability of underground transmission. NC Utilities Commission (Nov. 2003) found that underground (u/g) outage rates are 50 percent less than overhead. MD Public Service Commision (Feb. 2000) found that u/g systems of Urban utilities have lower frequency and duration of outages.  The Australian government (Nov. 1998) found that high voltage u/g systems had 80 percent less outages than overhead.

 Significantly, I found this information on the www.ferc.gov website when I googled Murraylink and TransEnergieUS  and learned that TransEnergieUS had sponsored the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission conference in Hartford, CT in 2004. This information has been available since the pdf of this FERC conference was filed in 2004.

 So the question is: why is HQ turning a blind eye to its own work elsewhere and trying to foist an antiquated system on NH? This is not about supplying power economically to New England. This is about corporate greed poised to make long-term bucks off sleeping New Englanders. In return, they’ll provide us with increased health and energy costs, guaranteed, for the long run.

To voice your concerns, please call or email Governor Hassan, 603-271-2121, Maggie@Maggie Hassan.com.

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