November 12, 2019
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Hydro-Quebec CEO says company fell short in making case for CMP transmission line

Robert F. Bukaty | AP
Robert F. Bukaty | AP
In this May 28, 2019, photo a homemade sign is posted on a telephone pole in protest of Central Maine Power's controversial hydropower transmission corridor in Jackman. The power corridor would extend 53 miles from the Canadian border into Maine's North Woods on land owned by CMP.

The CEO of Canadian energy giant Hydro-Quebec said the company could have done a better job making its case for Central Maine Power’s controversial 145-mile transmission line through western Maine.

Eric Martel appeared Tuesday on Maine Calling, and fielded questions from critics of the project, including Dylan Voorhees, clean energy director for the Natural Resources Council of Maine.

Voorhees criticized Hydro-Quebec for making claims to editorial boards and on the air about project facts, but never in permit proceedings in Maine.

[As Maine debates 145-mile electric line, energy giant with billions at stake is absent]

Martel said he’d be happy to discuss the project with Voorhees. “I’ll invite you — the next time I’m here I’d love to sit with you so that we can go through these points and make sure that we all have the right information, but …”

“Under oath?” Voorhees asked.

“Ah, I don’t need to do that under oath,” Martel answered, “but I don’t know, I’m not a lawyer, so all this…”

“Well that’s how we do things when we provide information to the Public Utilities Commission,” Voorhees said. “It’s under oath and other people get to ask us questions in public, in a transparent way.”

Asked whether state voters should have final say on the project, Martel said that would be fair. Opponents were at the polls Tuesday gathering signatures needed to get the question on next November’s statewide ballot.

This article appears through a media partnership with Maine Public.

 



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