Opposition to the Central Maine Power corridor proposal has surged in the last 14 months as Mainers learn about its negative impacts. Grassroots members of Say NO to NECEC have leveraged 23 towns to either rescind support or oppose the corridor, including five towns not even along the proposed corridor route (“List of towns opposing CMP transmission corridor grows,” Sept. 1). Polling shows that over 70% of Mainers know that the CMP corridor is a bad deal for Maine.

These town votes, however, are non-binding, which means a municipal permit could still be granted for the CMP corridor. The next step for towns to take is to enact an electrical transmission corridor moratorium ordinance. This ordinance would serve as a pause in any electricity transmission corridor development in a town for 180 days.

To date, CMP has not received approval for most of state and federal corridor permits it needs. CMP is starting to ask towns for provisional permits, which would take full effect only after the state and federal permits are secured. It is important to note that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has raised serious concerns about CMP’s permit applications. CMP is under multiple investigations by state energy regulators right now, so allowing any municipal permitting to go ahead puts the town at risk.

The uncertainty surrounding CMP’s corridor means that towns need to hit the pause button at the municipal level. Towns cannot afford to make a mistake in granting a municipal permit that it doesn’t have the resources to fix.

Mainers cannot trust CMP to adequately and fairly serve current customers. The Public Utilities Commission must come to a resolution to reimburse overcharged ratepayers rather than side with a foreign utility corporation before any additional municipal permit decisions should be made on the CMP’s merchant, for-profit corridor.

Let’s press pause, then stop the CMP corridor.


Sandi Howard