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Energy to dominate meeting of eastern premiers

New England governors and Eastern Canadian premiers are expected to focus on a regional approach to energy when they begin their annual meeting Tuesday in Bar Harbor, Maine. With an energy-hungry New England market and the five eastern provinces all looking to export new sources of energy, the premiers say maintaining good cross-border relations is crucial. "We'll be able to talk about the commonalities and that's around energy efficiency, around renewable types of energy," said Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald.

New England governors and Eastern Canadian premiers are expected to focus on a regional approach to energy when they begin their annual meeting Tuesday in Bar Harbor, Maine.

With an energy-hungry New England market and the five eastern provinces all looking to export new sources of energy, the premiers say maintaining good cross-border relations is crucial.

"We'll be able to talk about the commonalities and that's around energy efficiency, around renewable types of energy," said Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald.

"We have our tidal here, and New Brunswick shares that, and there are projects along the eastern coast of the United States, and we share the issues of renewables and natural gas."

New Brunswick Premier Shawn Graham has set the ambitious goal of making his province the energy hub for the region, funnelling electricity and natural gas into Maine and beyond.

"The challenge that New Brunswick has is overcoming the transmission hurdles that exist," Graham told reporters. "That's why our discussions with the State of Maine and our continued discussions with the State of New Hampshire are critical to building the energy hub."

Both Graham and MacDonald are quick to boast about... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

New England governors and Eastern Canadian premiers are expected to focus on a regional approach to energy when they begin their annual meeting Tuesday in Bar Harbor, Maine.

With an energy-hungry New England market and the five eastern provinces all looking to export new sources of energy, the premiers say maintaining good cross-border relations is crucial.

"We'll be able to talk about the commonalities and that's around energy efficiency, around renewable types of energy," said Nova Scotia Premier Rodney MacDonald.

"We have our tidal here, and New Brunswick shares that, and there are projects along the eastern coast of the United States, and we share the issues of renewables and natural gas."

New Brunswick Premier Shawn Graham has set the ambitious goal of making his province the energy hub for the region, funnelling electricity and natural gas into Maine and beyond.

"The challenge that New Brunswick has is overcoming the transmission hurdles that exist," Graham told reporters. "That's why our discussions with the State of Maine and our continued discussions with the State of New Hampshire are critical to building the energy hub."

Both Graham and MacDonald are quick to boast about natural gas they can send into the United States.

A liquefied natural gas plant in Saint John, N.B., is expected to go into operation at the end of this year.

"It's the first constructed in Canada and will put over a billion cubic feet of gas a day into the pipeline," Graham said.

Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador are eager to flood the New England states with clean hydro power, while tiny Prince Edward Island expects to have 400 megawatts of wind power for sale.

"I know in the big picture it's probably not a lot, but still it's good clean energy and it's a good opportunity for us to be able to move it into the New England market," said P.E.I. Premier Robert Ghiz.

Ghiz said as provincial and state governments discuss cap-and-trade programs and other means to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the ability to sell renewable power will become very important.

"Without a doubt, you can see green credits being traded now," Ghiz said. "We think as it moves into the future, these green credits could be worth even more."

The annual meeting of the premiers and governors comes amid federal elections on both sides of the Canada-U.S. border.

Ghiz said the prospect of changes at a national level won't distract him from seeking future deals for his province.

Meanwhile, Graham has examined the energy proposals being touted by the American candidates and says they have set their sights on projects 15 to 20 years from now.

He says the eastern provinces can do better than that.

"New Brunswick has actively taken steps over the last two years that will give us first-mover advantage...the first liquefied natural gas plant, we're in discussions for the first refinery to be built in North America in over 25 years, coupled with discussions now on a new nuclear reactor," he said.

Among other issues to top the agenda, the governors and premiers will receive an action plan to deal with air quality and transportation.

Graham wants the federal government in Washington to raise highway weight limits to match those in Canada.

He said it could greatly reduce the number of trucks on the roads.


Source: http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS...

SEP 14 2008
https://www.windaction.org/posts/17091-energy-to-dominate-meeting-of-eastern-premiers
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