March 30, 2011

House Rules: Eminent Domain Bill Wins 86% of Vote

A 'crushing defeat' for Northern Pass is what more than one legislator called the 317-51 House of Representatives vote in favor of HB648--the bill meant to curtail the use of eminent domain for private commercial power transmission projects like Northern pass. It is good news for the overwhelming number of people against the Northern Pass proposal, and the House should be commended for recognizing the fundamental injustice of using the government's power of eminent domain for a private commercial venture. The only way to get over 300 votes in a 400-seat legislature is to have support from all over the state. Coos County sends only 11 legislators to Concord--Grafton County only 26.  Further evidence that the opposition to the Northern Pass proposal is not only deep, but wide.

But the bill must still go through the Senate. Should it survive Senate, it may not be a welcome guest in the Governor's office. Read the Forest Society's press release regarding the House vote here. Paula Tracy's story in the Union Leader can be read here.

Oh Canada!

Opposition to Northern Pass is not limited to the U.S. side of the border, as described here in the Sherbrooke Record. It's worth remembering that even in Quebec, whose citizens perhaps stand to benefit economically from Hydro-Quebec selling power to the New England market, there are considerable concerns--over the negative impact to their landscape as well as the reliability of their own electric supply.

March 28, 2011

Burton Calls for Northern Pass Withdrawal

Executive Councilor Ray Burton made good on his promise to send an open letter asking that the Northern Pass proposal be denied a Presidential Permit. In a letter to the Dept. of Energy, Gary Long of PSNH, Hydro-Quebec and Tom Wagner of the White Mountain National Forest (where the proposed expanded corridor would need a Special Use Permit), Burton wrote "It is time for Hydro officials Brousseau and Vandal, and PSNH officials to fold their tent and this project and go home! And for PSNH to buy local electrical power!" Burton also invited Gov. John Lynch and the Congresssional Delegation (Shaheen, Ayotte, Bass and Guinta) to join him in opposing the project.

Burton has been a vocal advocate for the local woodburning energy plants, noting that bringing in cheap foreign electricity would likely put them out of business.

March 27, 2011

The Incredible Shrinking Towers

Northern Pass would like New Hampshire residents to think that the view of the proposed towers won't be all that bad, and have been putting out scaled drawing as those seen in a story in the NH Sunday News by Paula Tracy and Sara Young-Knox that you can read here.

But it would seem that potential real estate buyers would beg to disagree, as the market for any property with a potential view of the towers has disappeared since the Northern Pass proposal gained notoriety last fall. Even property owners in Franklin, where city officials like the tax benefits that the project would bring, are concerned about the falling values of their properties.

The DOE hearing in Haverhill, NH, was of particular interest because they know exactly what living near towers and HVDC lines is like thanks to the existing National Grid line. Note that not one person spoke in favor of Northern Pass in Haverhill.

Watch going forward as Northern Pass attempts to not only minimize the impact of the proposed towners, but tries to marginalize the public opposition.

March 25, 2011


Power Companies Should Listen to the Public, Go Back to the Drawing Board

Concord, NH, March 25—Using full-page ads in newspapers around the state, the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests (Forest Society) is calling for the chief executive officers of the power companies involved in the unpopular Northern Pass power line proposal to voluntarily withdraw the project from consideration due to the overwhelming public opposition.

“On behalf of the thousands who stand in firm opposition, we are respectfully asking the CEOs of Northeast Utilities, PSNH, NStar and Hydro-Quebec to voluntarily reconsider their Northern Pass proposal, “ said Jane Difley, president/forester of the Forest Society.

In addition to the advertisements calling for withdrawal, the Forest Society is sending letters directly to the CEOs asking them to listen to the will of the New Hampshire people.

“We believe that public opinion is a pass-fail ingredient of determining the ‘public interest’ of a proposal like this,” Difley said. “This should be especially true for a merchant project like Northern Pass, a private commercial development that is not based on market demand nor for system reliability.

“After the Dept. of Energy (DOE) hearings last week, it’s clear to anyone willing to listen that the project as proposed is not wanted by an overwhelming majority,” said Difley. “The responsible thing to do is withdraw Northern Pass from the permitting process and go back to the drawing board.”

Seven DOE hearings were held March 14-20 to get public input on the scope of an Environmental Impact Study that would evaluate the environmental, economic and social impact of 180 miles of power line corridor running from Hydro-Quebec in Canada through New Hampshire to deliver electricity to southern New England. The proposed project includes 140 miles of high voltage direct current (HVDC) from the Canadian border in Pittsburg, NH, to Franklin, NH, and from there 40 miles of AC corridor to a substation in Deerfield, NH.

“Planting more than 1,000 towers up to 135 feet high across the New Hampshire landscape is not a reasonable alternative,” Difley said. “The Forest Society has a legal and ethical obligation to defend conservation lands from this kind of commercial development, and a long history of protecting the New Hampshire landscape.

“Common sense suggests that the time and money required for Northern Pass to overcome the will of the people would be better spent building consensus around solutions to our energy needs that are compatible with New Hampshire values as articulated by the thousands who have spoken out in opposition to this proposal,” said Difley.

Speakers at the DOE hearings voiced their strong objections to the loss of property values, impact on local energy generation, environmental damage, potential health issues, and unfair use of eminent domain, among other detrimental effects of the project as proposed.

At Town Meeting this month, 29 towns voted to oppose Northern Pass, more than half voting unanimously. Legislative hearings on bills related to the proposal, including the controversial use of eminent domain, have drawn hundreds of people opposing Northern Pass. Earlier this week more than 2,600 letters asking Governor Lynch to oppose the project were delivered to his office. The Forest Society has also been collecting the names of thousands who don’t wish the project to go forward as proposed.

March 24, 2011

Seven Hearings: Was Anybody Listening?

Existing HVDC lines in Haverhill, NH.
More than 2,500 people attended seven hearings held by the Department of Energy (DOE) on seven consecutive days in March in seven different New Hampshire towns. The DOE's goal was to hear public input on what should be included in the Environmental Impact Study that would evaluate the environmental, economic and social impacts of the proposed Northern Pass HVDC power line.

More than 300 people spoke at those hearings. More than 95 percent of those spoke in opposition to Northern Pass. It was evident from the buttons, signs and symbolic hunter-orange clothing that virtually all who attended--outside of the Northern Pass representatives themselves--were in opposition to the proposed power line and towers.

While the arguments against the power line were varied and often emotional, they reflected a strong attachment to the landscape. But not just as a scenic backdrop--though the notion of scarring our hillsides found no friends outside of Franklin--but as a way of life.

Speaker after speaker took his or her three minutes at the podium in the hopes that the DOE might understand what the Northern Pass applicants have not: that the opposition to 180 miles of power line is not just about the view, nor just about a home. All along the proposed routes homeowners don't just just live on the land, the land provides their livelihood. And for many, it has done so thanks to the backbreaking work of many generations. Offering someone a job--a temporary job at that--to replace a chosen lifestyle as if that were somehow equivalent is an insult like no other.

Dairy farmer John Amey of Pittsburg perhaps best summed up the many emotional appeals to the DOE to reject the Northern Pass Presidential Permit: "There is no way landowners can be adequately compensated for the loss of a way of life."

In Franklin, where a 25-acre facility would be built to convert the HVCD current to AC before sending it on to Deerfield, a few people connected to city hall spoke of their need for the resulting tax revenue. Nearly as many Franklin residents spoke against the proposal, fearing the drop in property values on and near the facility and lamenting how it might brand Franklin forever as an undesirable community in which to live.

In Haverhill, where the last of the hearings was held, those who live in the area already know about living under, near, and in sight of an existing HVDC National Grid line running from Canada to Massachusetts. Their up-close experience only cemented their opposition to a proposed alternate route that would run through Haverhill and surrounding towns should Northern Pass fail to acquire a special use permit to go through the White Mountain National Forest. Even the option of using that existing corridor for additional DC lines got poor reviews, with testimony about the noise of the lines in wet weather.

It was in Haverhill that Tom Thomson threw down the political gauntlet for 2012, advising every candidate for local, state and federal office--including those coming for the Presidential Primary--to "do their homework on this issue."  It should be noted that Sen. Kelly Ayotte appeared in person in Haverhill, as did Congressman Charlie Bass, as well state rep Rick Ladd and others. Sen. Jeanne Shaheen had a representative at every hearing.  Executive Councilor Ray Burton was omni-present and in opposition. The most visibly absent award went to Governor John Lynch, who had a representative at one meeting but was otherwise unseen.

Sam Cataldo and Jackie Calli-Pitts, two state reps with seats on the Science, Technology and Energy Committee, both made the trip to fellow Committee-member Rep. Larry Rappoport's home district of Colebrook for the hearing there in anticipation of further discussion about HB648 regarding the use of eminent domain. Other state reps and many local officials attended hearings and spoke in opposition at each of the hearings as well.
The DOE representatives, who were exceedingly polite, respectful, and attentive throughout their hearings, are now back in Washington, D.C. They will continue to accept comments on the scope of the EIS through April 12. They will then sift through all comments, and based on those (presumably) determine exactly what will be studied as part of that EIS. The draft EIS is not expected to be presented for at least a year.

Perhaps the biggest issue of in all this is to what extent public opinion matters. Although New Hampshire residents and landowners, seeing little or no public benefit to the proposed project, clearly have said 'Nay' to Northern Pass, there is in fact no vote.  Will the process take into consideration that public outcry? Do the Presidential Permit and state Site Evaluation Committee processes that Northern Pass must go through even consider overwhelming public opposition as clear evidence of a lack of public benefit?

As with many questions surrounding Northern Pass, that one, too, remains unanswered.

March 23, 2011

Gov. Lynch Gets 2600 New Pen Pals

It is increasingly clear--at least to anyone who chooses to listen--that the people of New Hampshire are not in favor of the Northern Pass proposal. More than two dozen towns have voted to opposed the power line project and the recent week of DOE scoping hearings drew more than 2500 people who were overwhelmingly opposed. Gov. John Lynch has been quoted as saying that if the communities of New Hampshire don't want the project, then he won't support it.

Many individuals have been writing to the Governor to express their oppostion. On Tuesday, Pam and Peter Martin of Plymouth came to Concord to deliver the more than 2600 letters they have collected to the Governor in the hopes that he will listen to his constituents and come to their aid. You can read the Martin's press release here.

For more about the grass roots opposition to Northern Pass, listen to Chris Jensen's piece on NHPR here.

You can email the Governor here. You can write the Governor at this address: Office of the Governor,
State House, 107 North Main Street , Concord, NH 03301.

Or maybe just pick up the phone and give him a call: (603)271-2121

Second Chance on Eminent Domain Bill

The good news about HB648, a bill relative to the use of eminent domain, is that the House Science, Technology and Energy Committee voted Ought to Pass (OTP) on Tuesday after long discussion and an amendment to the original wording as proposed by primary sponsor Rep. Larry Rappoport (R-Colebrook). The committee had previously voted to retain the bill (hold for future study), and by voting the new version of the bill OTP it will have a chance to be acted on this legislative session.

Much of the discussion surrounded the key issues that surround the eminent domain issue. When should the power to take an individual's property be used and by whom? Assuming the answer to that question lies in the greater public benefit of a proposed project, who decides whether that public benefit in fact exists, how is "public" defined, and could purported regional needs trump the constitutional rights of New Hampshire citizens? What role might the federal government play should a state like New Hampshire preclude the use of eminent domain for a project like Northern Pass?

There will be more discussion. The Committee should be commended for taking seriously the concerns of citizens over the use of eminent domain by Northern Pass. The bill as voted on would not stop Northern Pass, however.

March 21, 2011

A Village Fears for Its Future

Katie Beth Ryan's story in the Valley News about some of the impacts of one of the alternate routes of the Northern Pass in the Upper Valley can be read here.

March 20, 2011

"No Right Way to Do the Wrong Thing"

Whatever Brian Mills and his fellow representatives from the Dept. of Energy think about the proposed Northern Pass project after a week of scoping hearings, they won't return to Washington, D.C. without a clear understanding about how the overwhelming majority of people in New Hampshire feel about it. As Colebrook's Samuel Bird said, "There is no right way to do the wrong thing."

Some 250 people showed up for Saturday afternoon's hearing in Colebrook, bringing the total attendance for six hearings (a seventh is being held in Haverhill, NH, today) to well over 2,000. Few have spoken in favor of the propsed power lines and towers, and the Colebrook contingent was no different.  If anything, the hearings have made New Hampshire people more upset, not less.

Dairy farmer John Amey of Pittsburg perhaps best summed up the many emotional appeals to the DOE to reject the Northern Pass Presidential Permit: "There is no way landowners can be adequately compensated for the loss of a way of life."

Speaker after speaker took their three minutes at the podium in the hopes that the DOE might understand what the applicants have not: the opposition to 140 miles of DC powerline is not just about the view, nor just about a home. All along the proposed routes homeowners don't just just live on the land, the land provides their livelihood. And for many, it has done so thanks to the backbreaking work of many generations. Offering someone a job--a part-time temporary job at that-- to replace a chosen lifestyle as if that were somehow equivalent is an insult like no other. As Bill Schaumburg of Columbia said, "What part of no don't they understand?"

Third-generation farmer Haven Haynes, Jr., of Colebrook made the excellent point that in a place like the North Country the farms, woodlots and sugarbushes the power lines would devastate are not just homes, but they are family businesses that would be put out of business.

Daryl Burtnett of the New Hampshire Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, which stewards the Vickie Bunnell Preserve in Colebrook, made the key point that what we know as the Northern Forest of New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont and upstate New York is "a globally important forest," noting that this is why The Nature Conservancy, as a worldwide conservation organization, is directing their resources to helping protect it." Observing that TNC has "yet to see any compelling need" for the proposed power line, Burnett urged the DOE to choose the 'no-action' alternative.

Yvonne Nanasi, representing the New Hampshire Preservation Alliance and the National Trust for Preservation, offered offered important testimony on the need to study the impact on significant historial and cultural resources that the proposed power lines would impact. She called for the identification of historical resources to be 'comprehensive and complete', and such a survey needed to include 'the area for at least one-half mile on either side of the proposed routes and those within sight of the powerline.

Sara Young-Knox covered the hearing for the Union Leader's Sunday print-only edition.

March 19, 2011

Plymouth Rocks

Another packed house at the Silver Center for the Arts, hundreds more urging the Dept. of Energy to study the true economic, environmental and social cost of the Northern Pass proposal. Read John Koziol's story in the Citzen of Laconia here.

March 17, 2011

The Lincoln Log: DOE EIS Hearing #3

It was standing room only at Loon Mountain in Lincoln as some 200 people packed the Hancock Room for the third Dept. of Energy hearing regarding the scope of the Environmental Impact Study that will be conducted as part of Northern Pass application for a Presidential Permit. No one spoke in favor of the proposed power line and towers that, if built, would carry electricity from Hydro-Quebec through New Hampshire to southern New England.

Given the location of the hearing Lincoln, a key center for tourism and recreation associated with the White Mountain National Forest, many of the comments asked the DOE to include in the EIS a study of the impact of the proposed towers on property values and the tourism economy.

Of particular importance were comments made by Ken Kimball representing the Appalachian Mountain Club. Among the points he made was the AMC's contention that the application for the Presidential Permit is incomplete and should not have proceeded to the EIS stage. He noted that any proposed mitigation for negative impacts is absent in the application.

"With zero substantive environmental or mitigation information in the Application, though it exists, the public is strongly disadvantaged in this EIS scoping process," Kimball said.

 He also urged the DOE to include in the EIS descriptions of the negative impacts the Hydro-Quebec power generation given that the applicant is relying on the purported positive benefits as a reason to go forward with the permit. Read AMC's full statement here.

More than one speaker noted that the large scale hydro facilities that would be generating the power to be transmitted via the Northern Pass towers would not be permitted in the U.S. due to their negative impacts.

The high point of the many emotional pleas for the DOE to withhold the Presidential Permit came when Katie Rose used her three minutes to sing "Live Free or Die," her 'Northern Pass opposition song,' which can be heard here.

Executive Councilor Ray Burton, who has made his opposition clear for several months, reiterated his strong stand against the proposal and said he would be calling on PSNH and Northeast Utilities to "fold up their tents and go home." Hear Chris Jensen's report on NHPR.

March 16, 2011

More Ethical Questions

Within days of asking the Dept. of Energy to change environmental consultants because of conflict of interest concerns, the Northern Pass team created more problems for themselves when lobbyist Donna Gamache was found to be texting a member of the Science, Technology, and Energy Committee during the hearing on HB 648/9 related to the use of eminent domain. Read John Gregg's story in the Valley News here.

Division of the House in Franklin

The surprise at the DOE hearing held in Franklin was not that local public officials spoke in favor of the Northern Pass proposal, but rather the extent to which the crowd at the historic Franklin Opera House was divided. Native son Daniel Webster likely would have been proud of the public debate (and unlikely to limit himself to the allotted three minutes the DOE allows each speaker).
Tara Ballenger's story in the Concord Monitor can be read here. In the Laconia Evening Citizen, Bea Lewis' recounting of the hearing can be read here.

If the Northern Pass project were built as proposed, Franklin would host the facility where the DC power would be converted to AC before traveling on to Deerfield for dispersion into the grid to serve southern New England. The Franklin City Council members have been vocal proponents of the tax revenue the project would bring to the city, and they outlined their arguments as expected. Other Franklin residents voice their opposition, questioning who will want to live near the proposed facility, lamenting how it will 'brand' Franklin as a undesireable community, and suggesting that no other more positive development would occur if the facility and power lines were built.

It's a fascinating debate over community values. Will lower taxes thanks to undesireable development lead to community growth? Or will creating a more desireable community (as a small riverfront city in the Lakes Region with good access to I-93, Franklin has tremendous potential) lead to sustainable growth and a vibrant population?

Here's a likely scenario: should the project get built as proposed, those people who ultimately get the few permanent jobs that Franklin city officials covet today will end up paying their own property taxes in the surrounding communities, where they will choose to live. But they will buy a quart of milk in Franklin on their way home.

March 15, 2011

Popular Opposition to Northern Towers Evident at DOE Hearing

More than 350 people traveled from Deerfield to Pittsburg to attend the first Dept. of Energy scoping hearing held in Pembroke on March 14. The representatives of Northern Pass were on hand to hear the 60 people who spoke--all but two of them spoke out against the proposed power line. The purpose of the hearings is to offer input to the DOE on what should be included in the Environmental Impact Statement they will commission to evaluate the environmental, economic and social impacts of the power line development if it were built.

"We urge you, in evaluating the ecological, economic and social impacts of this proposal, to envision and rigorously analyze a broad range of alternatives, among them the “no action” alternative," said Jane Difley, president/forester of the Forest Society. "As a nation we should adhere to the tenet of medicine and 'First, do no harm'.

A recording of Difley's comments can be heard here thanks to WTPL 107.7 The Pulse.

"There has been a suggestion that the opposition to this project as proposed is simply a NIMBY, or “not in my backyard” reaction to visual blight and ecological harm," Difley said. "It is unfortunate that the proponents of Northern Pass do not consider 180 miles of New Hampshire part of their own back yard. We do. In fact, the Weeks Act was signed 100 years ago this month to establish the eastern National Forests—most notably the White Mountain National Forest—in large part because the nation recognized that our forested landscape was its back yard, and that protecting our timber, water, wildlife and tourism resource was paramount. We believe this is more true today, not less."

You can read Difley's complete comments here. Read Tara Ballenger's coverage of the hearing in the Concord Monitor here. WMUR Channel 9 coverage can be found here. Dan O'Brien's story in the Union Leader can be read here.

March 11, 2011

Northern Pass Losing Big at Town Meetings: 23 Say No So Far

The Northern Pass proposed tower and power line proposal is being discussed at a number of Town Meetings this March, and the early results indicated that few, if any, residents support it. Results are now in from twenty of the towns--all voted to oppose Northern Pass, in most cases unanimously.  (Holderness voters were unanimous Wednesday night: 180-0.) The list so far also includes Bath, Bethlehem, Bridgewater, Campton, Clarksville, Colebrook, Columbia, Dalton, Easton, Haverhill, Jefferson, Lancaster, Landaff, Littleton, Northumberland, Orford, Pittsburg, Stewartstown, Stratford, Sugar Hill, Wentworth, and Woodstock.

Governor Lynch has been quoted as saying that he would not support the proposal if the communities don't want it. Let's hope he's listening.

Eminent Domain Still a Key Issue

The Science, Technology and Energy committee voted to retain HB 648--pertaining to the use of eminent domain for projects like Northern Pass--rather than send it on to the legislature for a vote. (See Gary Rayno's story in the Union Leader here.) The hundreds of Northern Pass opponents who showed up at the Statehouse on Wednesday in support of the bill and the thousands of others who share their opinions are understandably wondering why elected officials continue to ignore the overwhelming public sentiment against the Northern Pass proposal. However, legislative politics work in funny ways and there's reason to think that the legislature may take up the important issues aired thanks to yesterday's committee hearing. Stay tuned.

March 10, 2011

Cart Before the Horse for Eminent Domain

Whatever the legislative outcome of HB648, the bill that would restrict the use of taking of land through eminent domain for the purpose of a private, large-scale transmission line, yesterday's committee hearing served to air important legal and constitutional issues surrounding the Northern Pass proposal. More than 150 landowners and others opposed to Northern Pass showed up to express their support for the bill.

Issue #1: Jim Dannis of Dalton summarized one of the most troubling issues, pointing out that because Northern Pass is a commercially funded proposal (not in the rate base of the public utility), it has essentially sidestepped a crucial part of the process--the determination of public benefit or need great enough to warrant the use of eminent domain. The private nature of the proposal is reinforced by the fact that the transmission line would be for the sole use of Hydro-Quebec and its client, Northern Pass. "In other states," Dannis testified, "the process of determining need comes at the front of the process. [With Northern Pass] we are left to twist in the wind for years as a result of the process here." Dannis argued that HB648 fixes that problem and "puts into legislation what is in the constitution."

Issue #2: Which brings us to a second big issue. As Bob Baker of Columbia pointed out, the Northern Pass proposal would almost certainly be challenged on consitutional grounds on the basis of Article 12-a in the New Hampshire Bill of Rights.
[Art.] 12-a. [Power to Take Property Limited.] No part of a person's property shall be taken by eminent domain and transferred, directly or indirectly, to another person if the taking is for the purpose of private development or other private use of the property.

It would seem that at the very least Northern Pass as proposed is facing years of litigation regardless of the outcome of its Presidential Permit and state Site Evaluation Committee. As landowners pointed out, the mere spectre of this proposal has dropped property values in towns along the proposed 180-mile corridor and brought real estate transactions to a virtual halt.

You can read a fair summary of the hearing by Paula Tracy in the Union Leader here. Kathy McCormack's Associated Press story ran in the Concord Monitor.

The bill is sponsored by Colebrook Rep. Larry Rappoport, among others, and is coming out of the Science, Technology and Energy Committee.

March 8, 2011

DOE Scoping Hearing Schedule

There are now seven scheduled Department of Energy Environmental Impact Statement Public Scoping hearings, with the first scheduled for Monday, March 14 in Pembroke. Note that the meeting place for the Plymouth hearing on Friday March 18 has been changed from a previous announced location.

The Forest Society will be attending all hearings. We have registered to speak at the first hearing in Pembroke.

Here's the DOE's description of the purpose of these hearings:
Members of the public are invited to attend to obtain information about the proposed project and make comments. DOE and project personnel will be available for informal discussions. Information on this project can be obtained from DOE's website related to the project at For further information about these public hearings or the EIS process, please contact Brian Mills at (202) 586-8267 or by e-mail at

Northern Pass Transmission Scoping Meetings
Pembroke, NH
Pembroke Academy cafeteria
209 Academy Road
Pembroke, NH 03275
Monday, March 14, 6-9 pm

Franklin, NH
Franklin Opera House
316 Central Street
Franklin, NH 03235
Tuesday, March 15, 6-9 pm

Lincoln, NH
The Mountain Club on Loon, Hancock Room
90 Loon Mountain Road
Lincoln, NH 03251
Wednesday, March 16, 6-9 pm

Whitefield, NH
Mountain View Grand Hotel and Resort, Presidential Room
101 Mount View Road
Whitefield, NH 03598
Thursday, March 17, 6-9 pm

Plymouth, NH
Plymouth State University,
Silver Center for the Arts
114 Main St.
Plymouth, NH
Friday, March 18, 6-9 pm

Colebrook, NH
Colebrook Elementary School
27 Dumont Street
Colebrook, NH 03576
Saturday, March 19, 1-4 pm

Haverhill, NH
Haverhill Cooperative Middle School
175 Morrill Drive
North Haverhill, NH
Sunday, March 20, 1-4 pm

March 7, 2011

Trees Not Towers: Why the Northern Pass proposal is Bad for New Hampshire

President/Forester Jane Difley's op-ed about why the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests has concluded that the proposal from Hydro-Quebec and Northeast Utilities provides little or no benefit for the people of New Hampshire while causing unecessary harm can be read here. If you'd like to read Gary Long's defense of the tradeoffs involved in the proposal (Long is President/COO of PSNH, a subsidiary of Northeast Utilities), you can do so here. It's also interesting to read the public comments that follow each op-ed--clearly Mr. Long is not yet making a convincing case.

March 2, 2011

Landowner Feels Harrassed by Northern Pass

According to a Lorna Colquhoun  in this week's Colebrook News & Sentinel Dr. Margaret K. Jones, a Massachusetts dentist and seasonal resident of Stratford for more than a decade, filed for the protective order in Coös County Superior Court in mid-January. The petition names Phil Stearns of Caron's Gateway Real Estate in Groveton and the Massachusetts-based engineering firm, Coler & Colontonio. Mr. Stearns works for the engineering firm on the Northern Pass project.

UPDATE: Margaret Jones attempt to get a restraining order against Northern Pass representatives was rebuffed by the court, as reported in the Union Leader here.