NECP in the News
Innovative New Clean Energy Transmission Line Proposed
New England Clean Power Link Would Deliver 1,000 MW of Clean Power to New England Market
Burlington, VT — The development of a new, completely buried power transmission project called the New England Clean Power Link was announced today by TDI New England. The proposed project would run from the Canadian border to Ludlow, Vermont, and deliver 1,000 MW of clean, renewable hydropower to the New England marketplace using state-of-the-art High Voltage direct current (HVdc) technology.
The Clean Power Link would provide low-cost electricity to help fuel economic growth across New England, producing an estimated $2 billion in energy savings for consumers over the first 10 years the line is in service. The project would help enable the integration of intermittent renewable resources into the transmission grid, increase reliability, and diversify the regionís fuel mix. Adding reliable hydropower will help protect ratepayers against market volatility and provide a stable power resource for years to come.
Donald Jessome, TDI New Englandís President and CEO, said, "We believe this project offers exciting benefits for Vermont. Over the course of the coming weeks and months we look forward to exploring this project with elected officials, communities, and other stakeholders. Furthermore, we are committed to continuing this dialogue throughout the entire course of the development of the Clean Power Link."
Jessome continued, "If approved, this innovative project would increase the marketís fuel diversity, lower costs for ratepayers, and help meet the New England governorsí identified goal of bringing additional Canadian hydropower into the region. By burying the line, either underwater or in existing rights of way, the project can deliver needed energy to the marketplace in a way that has minimal impacts on communities and the environment. We want to stress that we are committed to constructing the line using the highest environmental standards to protect Lake Champlain and Vermontís natural beauty."
The Clean Power Link Project proposes to run two six-inch-wide, solid-state cables an estimated 150 miles exclusively in Vermont. Approximately 100 miles would be buried under Lake Champlain using low-impact installation techniques, with the balance buried underground along existing rights-of-way. The line would end at a converter station which would be built in Ludlow, Vermont. The converter station would connect to Vermont Electric Power Companyís 345 kV Coolidge substation.
Mr. Jessome explained that the HVdc technology that would be used is at the forefront of America's emerging "smart grid" revolution, saying, "The solid-state design is environmentally friendly, has an extremely small footprint, and allows for very controllable electric flow, which helps with grid reliability."
The line is estimated to cost $1.2 billion and would be 100 percent privately financed. The project is being developed as a merchant line, meaning the financial risk associated with developing and constructing it is borne by the developer and not Vermontís ratepayers. 1,000 MW is enough power to serve approximately one million residential customers. The project has a targeted in-service date of 2019.
The Clean Power Link offers many benefits for Vermont and New England. These include: reducing electricity costs for businesses and consumers; lowering emissions; creating hundreds of construction jobs; producing new tax revenue for Vermont; creating a more reliable, diverse energy grid; hardening transmission infrastructure to protect it from natural disasters; and providing "Black Start" capability — meaning the line can assist in quickly restarting the electrical grid in case of a blackout.
About TDI New England
TDI New England is a subsidiary of the Blackstone Group LP (Blackstone), which has its headquarters in New York City. Blackstone is a leader in alternative asset management with over $230 billion currently under management. The TDI New England team is made up of the same leadership team currently developing the Champlain Hudson Power Express in New York State. The developers have a strong track record of working in partnership with local elected officials, community groups, and other stakeholders to develop projects that meet unique energy needs of growing economies, while minimizing local impacts.
More information on the company and project are available at www.necplink.com.