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September 26th, 2013

Maine Wind Gets Much Bigger

by Andrew Price, President & COO

Between Friday September 20th and Monday September 23rd, more than 580 MW of new wind power deals were announced, representing more than $1 billion in project costs. If the announced projects all move forward, they would represent a doubling of Maine wind power capacity to more than 1,000 MW. While the electricity has been sold to out-of-state utilities, the projects are physically located and interconnected to the power grid in Maine. With a peak electric load of about 2,000 MW, significant existing hydroelectric and biomass generation, and limited transmission capacity, Maine generators already experience difficulty exporting electricity out of the State in many hours. The addition of 580 MW of new wind power generation should lower power prices in Maine as “congestion” costs associated with the limited ability to export the electricity, increases power prices south of Maine. It will be interesting to watch how the addition of these significant new wind power facilities changes the energy landscape in New England.

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