Things to know about Canadian hydropower in US Northeast

AP News
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Posted: Aug 02, 2015 11:42 AM

Power produced by hydroelectric generators in Canada have played a part in the U.S. Northeast's electricity landscape for four decades, and experts say its role will only increase. Some points about current production and proposals to bring more Canadian power to the region:

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THE FACTS

— In 2014, 1.6 percent of the electricity purchased in the U.S. came from Canada, and 60 percent of that went to New England and New York, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Canadian imports made up 12 to 16 percent of retail electricity sales in New England and New York.

— In 2014, Hydro-Quebec, the biggest Canadian player in New England, exported more than 28 percent of the Canadian power that made it to the U.S., nearly double the next largest exporter.

— Hydro-Quebec has 61 hydropower plants that can generate 36,500 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 36.5 million homes. The New England grid has current generating capacity of 31,000 megawatts.

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THE PROPOSALS

— The $1.4 billion Northern Pass proposal to carry 1,200 megawatts of electricity via mostly overhead lines across 187 miles of New Hampshire.

— The $1.2 billion New England Clean Power Link to run 1,000 megawatts under Lake Champlain and across Vermont.

— The 1,000-megawatt Champlain Hudson Power Express, a $2 billion proposal that would run 330 miles mostly under Lake Champlain and New York's Hudson River to New York City.

— The Maine Green Line, a $1 billion-plus, 300-mile cable underground and under the ocean to the Boston area.

— The Northeast Energy Link, a 230-mile underground run from Orrington, Maine, to Tewksbury, Massachusetts, at an estimated cost of more than $2 billion.