by Fred Bever
Maine Public news story
The Sportsman’s Alliance of Maine (SAM) is rescinding its support for Central Maine Power’s controversial transmission project proposed for western Maine.
The 141-mile project would bring electricity from Canada’s hydro-dams to consumers in Massachusetts, and it would require cutting a new corridor through more than 50 miles of Maine’s western forests.
About a year ago SAM’s board of directors voted to endorse the project and support CMP’s permit applications to regulators in Maine and Massachusetts. But SAM’s Executive Director, David Trahan, says that since then more information about potential effects on woodland values, such as winter deer-yards and trout streams, has emerged.
A recent survey of members, he wrote in a letter to CMP, found “overwhelming” opposition to the project.
“Our position now is to examine each provision and then weigh in,” says Trahan. “We have consulted with a biologist, and we are looking very closely at the rest of the permitting process. Our membership has spoken and we will act accordingly.”
CMP spokesperson John Carroll says it’s important to note that SAM is not opposing the project, but only rescinded earlier support.
Next week Carroll is scheduled to make a new presentation to Somerset County commissioners, where opponents have asked for re-consideration of the Commission’s earlier vote to support the project.