Tony Marple’s recent column (Maine Voices, June 1) included numerous false statements about the proposed transmission line that Central Maine Power has been promoting through its multimillion-dollar campaign to sell Mainers a project they don’t want.
First, CMP wants Mainers to think that an MIT study justifies its project when, in fact, it does the opposite. Although the study found that Canadian hydropower could be helpful as part of a future energy system, that’s true only if it’s part of two-way transmission that allows excess wind and solar from New England to be shipped to Canada. CMP’s corridor wouldn’t support this type of activity because it would deliver power only in one direction: from Quebec toward Massachusetts. In truth, the MIT study shows that CMP’s corridor is outdated and unnecessary.
Second, Mr. Marple and CMP vilify the natural gas industry but fail to mention that Avangrid, CMP’s parent company, owns six Northeast natural gas companies serving just under a million customers. They are not only complicit in bringing polluting fracked gas to our region; they actively profit from it.
Finally, CMP disrespects western Maine by downplaying the enormous negative impact 53 miles of new, permanently cleared transmission corridor would have on the North Woods, the largest block of intact temperate forest in the world. The environmental harm posed by this project helps explain why nearly every community near the new corridor has voted to rescind support or oppose it.
Don’t be fooled by CMP’s greenwashing. The CMP corridor is a bad deal for Maine.
clean energy policy advocate and staff attorney, Natural Resources Council of Maine