Maine DEP asks First Wind to prove financial capacity
AUGUSTA – The Maine Department of Environmental Protection is asking First Wind, Maine’s largest wind power developer, to prove that it has enough money to build four major projects that are in different stages of construction and permitting.
The request follows a Maine Supreme Judicial Court ruling last month that the state’s Public Utilities Commission erred when it approved a joint venture between First Wind and Emera Inc. of Nova Scotia, the energy company that owns two utilities in northern and eastern Maine. The projects that the DEP is scrutinizing had millions of dollars in financing from Emera, money that First Wind now can’t use.
The PUC is holding meetings to decide how to comply with the court’s ruling.
The DEP’s request affects four wind-energy projects: Oakfield Wind in Aroostook County, Hancock Wind in Hancock County, Bingham Wind in Somerset County, and Bowers Wind in Penobscot and Washington counties. Taken together, the projects could cost about $1 billion to build.
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