Spanish power giant Iberdrola said on Sept. 29 that it will invest $1.4 billion to build a new electricity grid in Maine that will connect with transmission lines from Canada.
The project involves building five new 345-kilovolt substations linked by approximately 500 miles of new or rebuilt transmission lines that will pass through 75 cities and towns.
The new electricity grid will create up to 3,100 jobs during its peak construction period and it is expected to be completed in 2015.
It is the largest energy infrastructure project in Maine's history and the first upgrade of the state's electricity grid in 40 years.
Iberdrola, the world's biggest wind-power generator, said the project will support the development of new renewable energy resources by increasing the capacity and efficiency of the New England transmission grid.
The company also said it will invest $166 million on a new 'smart grid' program to be developed over the next two years for the Central Maine Power Company.
"Today marks a major milestone for Iberdrola USA and Maine," Iberdrola USA chief executive Bob Kump said.
Last year, President Barack Obama announced $3.4 billion in grants to modernize the country's electricity grid.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2010