The ITC Lake Erie Connector Project Included in Ontario’s 2017 Long-Term Energy Plan
NOVI, Mich., Oct. 26, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — ITC Lake Erie Connector LLC commends the Ontario Government on its 2017 Long-Term Energy Plan and charting a path for a more reliable, efficient and affordable energy future for the province, including a focus on reforming the energy market to support import and export of energy between jurisdictions.
ITC Lake Erie Connector LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of ITC Holdings Corp., the largest independent electricity transmission company in the United States, is responsible for the Lake Erie Connector project. The ITC Lake Erie Connector is a proposed 1,000 MW, bi-directional, high-voltage direct current (HVDC) underwater transmission line that would provide the first direct link between the markets of the Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) and PJM Interconnection LLC (PJM). The project would enable transmission customers to more efficiently access energy, capacity and renewable energy opportunities in both markets.
“The plan laid out by Energy Minister Thibeault and his Government today underscores the importance of creating a reliable, sustainable, and affordable energy market, of which the Lake Erie Connector is a key component,” says Terry Harvill, Ph.D., president, ITC Grid Development.
“As the only contracted transmission project included in the 2017 Long-Term Energy Plan, this two-way line will provide the first direct power connection between Ontario and the the PJM energy market, which is comprised of 13 states in the Eastern U.S. The Lake Erie Connector will open the door to electricity trading between these markets, working to improve the security and reliability of both energy grids.”
Under the project’s funding model, generators and electricity traders who transmit electricity and related products over the line will pay, thereby not impacting the transmission rates paid by Ontario ratepayers.
“Building the infrastructure to support this large-scale electricity trade ensures stability and affordability of energy for Ontarians, ensuring the province can import clean energy when needed and export it when it’s able to,” adds Harvill. “We thank Minister Thibeault and his Government for recognizing the value, flexibility, carbon-reduction and many other benefits that the Lake Erie Connector project will provide.”
The ITC Lake Erie Connector project received its final major permit approval from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) on October 16, 2017 and the project is now fully permitted in both the United States and Canada. ITC previously received a Presidential Permit from the U.S. Department of Energy as well as major permits from Canada’s National Energy Board and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection.
Remaining milestones for the ITC Lake Erie Connector include completing project cost refinements and securing favorable transmission service agreements with prospective counterparties, after which ITC would proceed with construction. ITC has completed the necessary system impact studies in IESO and PJM, signed service agreements with the manufacturers of converter stations and the submarine cable, and secured nearly all land necessary for the terrestrial cable route, converter stations and construction laydown areas. The company has held or participated in numerous public consultations in Ontario and Pennsylvania – the respective terrestrial points of the line – to discuss the project and gather community input.
The ITC Lake Erie Connector is a proposed +/- 320 kV HVDC bi-directional transmission line, approximately 73 miles in length, that would connect converter stations located in Erie, Pennsylvania and Nanticoke, Ontario.