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Houlton Water to appeal First Wind’s investment from Emera

Houlton Water Co. wants the state’s top court to review and throw out regulators’ approval of a $333 million joint venture by Emera and First Wind that would help the wind developer finance a number of wind farms in Maine.

PORTLAND, Maine — Houlton Water Co. wants the state’s top court to review and throw out regulators’ approval of a $333 million joint venture by Emera and First Wind that would help the wind developer finance a number of wind farms in Maine.

The municipally owned utility has argued before the Maine Public Utilities Commission that the deal runs counter to state law related to deregulation of power production, which required utilities to get rid of most of their power generation capabilities.

The appeal would put the decision back before the Maine Supreme Judicial Court, which in an earlier ruling found that the PUC did not adequately determine when a financial relationship is sufficient to give a transportation and distribution company an incentive to favor one power generator over another.

The initial appeal prompted the state’s Department of Environmental Protection to ask First Wind for new financial assurances for some of its projects now in some stage of construction or permitting. The company told the DEP at the time that the $333 million investment from Emera would support part of its projects in Oakfield, Hancock and Bingham.

In the notice of... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

PORTLAND, Maine — Houlton Water Co. wants the state’s top court to review and throw out regulators’ approval of a $333 million joint venture by Emera and First Wind that would help the wind developer finance a number of wind farms in Maine.

The municipally owned utility has argued before the Maine Public Utilities Commission that the deal runs counter to state law related to deregulation of power production, which required utilities to get rid of most of their power generation capabilities.

The appeal would put the decision back before the Maine Supreme Judicial Court, which in an earlier ruling found that the PUC did not adequately determine when a financial relationship is sufficient to give a transportation and distribution company an incentive to favor one power generator over another.

The initial appeal prompted the state’s Department of Environmental Protection to ask First Wind for new financial assurances for some of its projects now in some stage of construction or permitting. The company told the DEP at the time that the $333 million investment from Emera would support part of its projects in Oakfield, Hancock and Bingham.

In the notice of appeal, filed Tuesday to the PUC, Houlton Water said that it plans to challenge the PUC decision on six different points, including whether the decision violated the Legislature’s intent in deregulating power production, whether the PUC went beyond its bounds in making certain stipulations in the case and whether the evidence in the case satisfied an earlier ruling requiring further scrutiny from regulators.

The wind energy development partnership first approved in 2012 involves Emera Inc. subsidiary Northeast Wind taking a 49 percent stake in the company JV Holdco, which would have ownership of certain First Wind projects. The Ontario-based Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. also would have a stake in those projects.


Source: http://bangordailynews.com/...

OCT 28 2014
http://www.windaction.org/posts/41526-houlton-water-to-appeal-first-wind-s-investment-from-emera
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