Natural Gas is the dominant source (> 40 percent) of electrical energy production in New England. It is currently cheap, due in part to a relatively new gas extraction technique known as “fracking.”
A recent Cornell University study argues that emissions associated with fracking extraction are deeply concerning:
“…shale gas is worse than conventional gas and is, in fact, worse than coal and worse than oil…”
Link to study.
The Northern Pass will result in a more diversified energy portfolio in New England, substituting up to 1,200 megawatts of hydroelectric energy for a like amount fossil-fuel energy.