WASHINGTON – A 700-mile transmission line project that’s supposed to deliver large quantities of electricity from Oklahoma wind farms to customers in the southeast has been another dealt a blow by the Department of Energy.
According to Reuters, the department has pulled out of a development deal with Houston-based Clean Line Energy Partners, with both sides saying the decision was mutual.
“The project is not dead, but is on a much slower track,” Clean Line Energy spokeswoman Sarah Bray told Reuters.
The $2.2 billion project, which would run across Oklahoma and Arkansas before ending near Memphis, was okayed by the Obama administration in 2016 after six years of study.
But it faced strong opposition from landowners in Arkansas, as well as that state’s two Republican senators, Tom Cotton and John Boozman.
What seemed the beginning of trouble came late last year the southeast utility giant Tennessee Valley Authority said it would not be signing a contract with Clean Line Energy, stating its customers were more interested in renewable energy generated locally.
In December Clean Line announced it was selling the Oklahoma portion of its project to the Florida power company NextEra Energy.
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