The proposed project met the statutory criteria for Commission approval including capacity benefits, diversity in Maine's energy supply and greenhouse gas emission reduction. The Commissioners directed Central Maine Power to participate in negotiation of a contract with Verso. Specific terms of the project will not be released until the contract is finalized.
Background: The Commission was given the authority by the Legislature in 2006 to direct electric utilities to enter into long-term electric generation contracts in order to bring cost benefits to Maine ratepayers by providing among other assets: lower electricity supply costs for Maine consumers; increase in renewable capacity; a hedge against volatile market prices of electricity; and an offset of costs resulting from new transmission. In 2010, the Legislature amended the statute to allow the Commission to include RECs in long-term contracts. The Commission approved its first long-term contract under this authority in October 2009. The consideration of other long-term contract proposals continues at the Commission.