New York State’s electricity to be connected to Quebec
Work has begun on an underground transmission line that will send Hydro-Quebec power to New York City as part of an effort to make the Big Apple less dependent on fossil fuels, state officials announced Wednesday.
Once completed, the Champlain Hudson Power Express line will run 546 kilometers from Hydro-Québec’s Hertel station in La Prairie, just south of Montreal, to New York City.
The respective governments expect the line to provide enough clean energy to power more than one million homes while reducing carbon emissions by 37 million metric tons, the equivalent of taking more than half a million cars off the road each year.
“With the start of construction on this project to bring clean energy to New York City, our state is setting another example of what climate action looks like,” New York State Governor Kathy Hochul said Wednesday. She called the transmission line “a monumental step toward protecting our environment and creating green, family-friendly jobs in upstate and southern New York.”
There are renewable resources in New York State such as solar farms and hydroelectric dams, it can be difficult to get electricity to southern New York City. The transmission line, which is expected to be completed in 2026, would run under Lake Champlain and the Hudson River and along existing highways heading south.
The state has set a goal of generating 70% of its electricity from renewable resources by 2030. Transmission lines, which carry electricity from where it is generated to where it is consumed, are critical to that effort, project proponents said.
“If you look at other resources, like offshore wind and solar, they’re absolutely going to help the state meet its goal, but a lot of them have to be built,” said Donald Jessome, chief executive of Transmission Developers, which is spearheading the project.
Environmental advocacy groups are in support of the project, but they are concerned about the potential ramifications for wildlife since parts of the transmission line will cross rivers.
“We are very supportive of renewable energy,” said Tracy Brown, president of the environmental group Riverkeeper, “but we remain concerned about the impact on the Hudson. If the cable is laid in the Hudson River as planned, we ask that the root is in the center of the river, away from the margins where important wildlife habitat is located.”