WATCH: Confused about Question 1? Here are the facts about the NECEC

Click HERE to watch on WMTW

Mainers will decide whether to reject or allow the New England Clean Energy Corridor to move forward this November, although the wording of the referendum may be confusing to some.

A "yes" vote means "no" to the NECEC, but even if Question 1 succeeds, it would not be the final word in killing the project.

The issue would get kicked back to the state Legislature, where a two-thirds majority in both houses would be required for the project to continue.

Proponents of Question 1, like Sandra Howard, cite the new 54-mile path that was recently cut for the project as a big reason to vote "yes."

The rest of the 145-mile corridor will be built along existing CMP transmission lines.

However, opponents of Question 1, like Mainers for Fair Laws spokesperson Adrienne Bennett, worry the referendum could set a dangerous precedent in Maine, since the state's Public Utilities Commission and Department of Environmental Protection, along with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Department of Energy, approved the corridor.

"This is something that should be very alarming to Mainers, if a process is followed, and all of those processes are followed to a T and deemed valid but in the future can be yanked away," Bennett said.

In a new video, CMP notes that while other New England states will receive most of the corridor's electricity, the state of Maine has agreed to purchase enough at a discounted rate to power 70,000 homes.

But Question 1 backers doubt the promised benefits and argue the corridor will depress the development of Maine-based solar power.

"We need to be thinking about in-state renewables rather than being reliant on foreign power," Howard said.

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  • Sandra Howard
    published this page in News 2021-09-20 20:01:56 -0400