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NECEC awards USD7 million contracts to four Maine-based companies [free access]

April 17, 2020

New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC) LLC has recently signed contracts worth USD7 million with four Maine companies, Eastern Forest Products in Casco, Maine Mats in Bingham, Dimensional Timber in Palermo, and Sunset Development Inc. in Milford, for various works related to the NECEC project. Earlier, the company had awarded more than USD300 million in contracts to Maine’s largest general contractor Cianbro, in a joint venture (JV) with Irby Construction, Sargent Electric and Northern Clearing, Inc. (NCI), to build and upgrade transmission systems and secure land clearing permissions for the NECEC project.


The NECEC project, in combination with additional smaller improvements at various facilities in Maine, will have the capacity to deliver up to 1,200 MW of power from Hydro-Québec’s vast hydropower generating fleet in Canada, to Massachusetts through Maine. CMP proposes to provide a new link through a ±320 kV high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission line between Canadian Hydro-Québec and the New England grids. In Maine, the line will begin at the Canadian border in western Somerset County, and run 145 miles (234 km) to a new alternating current (AC)/direct current (DC) converter station in Lewiston. The project will be connected to the power grid of Independent System Operator-New England (ISO-NE) in Massachusetts.


To date, the NECEC has received permits from a number of state agencies, while additional permits required to begin construction are expected in the second quarter of 2020.


The project is facing strong opposition due to its likely impact on the environment. The company hopes to break ground in May 2020 and finish the project in late 2022, but still needs to secure further federal clearances from Department of Energy (DoE) and US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).