determinedthat the Northern Pass transmission project can reliably interconnect with theregion's electric grid.
The NewEngland grid operator concluded in its July 19 decision that interconnection ofEversource Energyaffiliate Northern PassTransmission LLC's proposed transmission line will not have asignificant adverse effect on the reliability or operations of either the gridor its market participants. The 192-mile high-voltage, direct-currenttransmission line seeks to deliver 1,090 MW of hydropower generated by Hydro-Québec in Canada to New England's wholesaleelectric market. ISO-NE previously approved the interconnection application forthe project in 2014 when it was originally 1,200 MW.
EversourceEnergy on June 28said it had entered into a 20-year power purchase agreement with Hydro-Québecfor power to be delivered over the $1.6 billion project. New Hampshire PublicUtilities Commission staff on June 10 published a settlement agreement with NorthernPass Transmission LLC to allow the project to operate as a public utilitywithin the state as required by New Hampshire law. On the same day, Quebec'senergy regulators authorizedthe construction of a nearly 79-kilometer-long, 320-kV direct-current line toconnect with the Northern Pass line at the Canada-U.S. border.
TheNorthern Pass project still needs regulatory approval from the New HampshirePUC and is undergoing federal and state permitting. The project is slated tostart construction in the fall of 2017 with an expected in-service date of May31, 2019. Eversource's New Hampshire utility subsidiary is known legally asPublic Service Co. of NewHampshire.