There has recently been inaccurate information initiated by opponents of the project regarding the agreement between Northern Pass Transmission and Hydro‑Québec. The information below is intended to set the record straight. As we have stated previously, New Hampshire consumers will not pay for any costs associated with the project.
- The Transmission Service Agreement (“TSA”) between Northern Pass Transmission, LLC (“NPT”) and H.Q. Hydro Renewable Energy, Inc. (“HQ”), which specifies the terms for recovery of costs as well as the rights and obligations of each of the Parties to this Agreement, for each project phase (from project development through to construction and use) of the proposed Northern Pass transmission line, was approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) and remains in full force and effect today.
- The term of the TSA began on the original execution date of October 4, 2010 and continues 40 years from the time NPT begins commercial operation, unless it is terminated earlier.
- The Forest Society is incorrect in alleging that the TSA expired on February 14, 2017. That date was an Approval Deadline that could be extended by mutual agreement of all parties. In fact, the Approval Deadline was extended earlier this year by written agreement between NPT and HQ. Accordingly, the extension of the Approval Deadline was fully consistent with the terms and conditions of the already approved TSA.
- Recognizing the large and growing demand for clean energy in the region, New England states have recently been seeking long-term contracts for clean energy resources. The next significant opportunity will occur this spring when Massachusetts will seek proposals for large quantities of clean energy that can be delivered to customers. Through this RFP process, successful projects will receive contracts with Massachusetts utilities. Depending on the outcome of the MA RFP, the TSA will be modified and/or complemented by one or more other agreements. However, it is premature to speculate further until the RFP outcome is determined.
It is noted that today Senator Kelly Ayotte and Congressman Charlie Bass submitted a letter to the Department of Energy that expresses their concern with The Northern Pass project as it is currently proposed.
We appreciate the comments offered by Senator Ayotte and Congressman Bass, and we look forward to continuing to work with them to address their concerns with the initial proposal as this project moves forward. We are in the very early stages of a rigorous, comprehensive, and multi-year review process, and we expect there will be both challenges and changes along the way. The Northern Pass project team remains committed to working collaboratively to address these issues for the good of all of New Hampshire.
Toward that end, it is our hope that the substantial economic benefits of this project for New Hampshire in the form of good paying construction jobs, $25 million in new annual tax revenue, and competitive and clean energy for NH are not overlooked. Many of the communities who stand to benefit from this project, like the City of Franklin, are struggling to provide basic services to their residents, including keeping their schools open and adequately staffed, and providing sufficient public safety resources. The unique opportunities that The Northern Pass project will provide should not be lost as all factors are considered.