New England’s policies supporting building increased renewable generation is underpinning pressure to invest in new transmission infrastructure in the region, with advocates for new power lines saying the projects will boost employment and alleviate existing high regional electricity costs.
Each of the six states in the New England region has “some form” of renewable energy portfolio standard, the organizers of the New England Clean Energy Transmission Summit held this week in Boston, said. Those state policies align with federal policies that enable strategic planning and cost-allocation of new transmission ensuring renewable generation access to power markets.
“With the right guidelines from FERC, regions are able to better coordinate their transmission plans and build a grid that links …businesses and families to cleaner, lower cost power,” Energy Future Coalition Managing Director John Jimison said in a statement ahead of the forum. Jimison spoke with AOL Energy at the US Association for Energy Economics summit in Washington, DC earlier this year; watch that video interview here.
The Boston event was attended by Federal Energy Regulatory Commissioner Cheryl LaFleur and Rep. Ed Markey.
Renewable generation has been a source of controversy in New England, but additions of new generation have been robust in an area without easy access to existing large-scale fossil fuel power. Wind projects have been controversial, with Cape Wind a high-profile example, in part because of their potentially costly transmission requirements, but additions of new generation, like that of new wind power at the Rollins farm in Maine, have continued.
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