Statement of Appalachian Mountain Club Director of Research
Kenneth Kimball on Northern Pass Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS)
July 22, 2015
AMC is still reviewing the extensive DEIS just issued by the
Department of Energy for the Northern Pass project. But some preliminary
observations are already apparent.
In its DEIS, the Department of Energy’s alternatives
analysis provides strong evidence that the overhead transmission line
proposed by Northern Pass or just partial burial in the vicinity of the White
Mountain National Forest would cause considerable environmental and
scenic damage compared to total burial of the project.
Furthermore, while Northern Pass has promoted its proposed
overhead transmission line as a project that would provide jobs in the region,
the DEIS provides clear evidence that full burial of the line would provide
almost twice as many jobs, a much smaller impact on property values, and more
long-lasting economic benefits to the region than overhead transmission lines
or partial burial.
Both this DEIS and a review of the Clean Energy Link
transmission project in Vermont show that 100 percent burial of HVDC
transmission lines is technically feasible, cost-effective, and has fewer
societal and environmental impacts. Unlike the Northern Pass overhead
transmission proposal, the Vermont project is completely buried and includes a
very substantial $400 million dollar mitigation and enhancement fund. We
challenge Northern Pass to follow the lead of the Vermont project and bury the
line for its entire length for the sake of the landscape, people, and economy
of New Hampshire.
Appalachian Mountain Club Director of Research
Labels: conservation, Conservation Action Network, Northern Pass, White Mountain National Forest