Most of northern Maine, including parts of Aroostook and Washington counties, is an energy island that is dislocated from the rest of the northeastern power grid, ISO New England.
A bill to connect that island to the New England power grid has passed the state House and Senate, and is awaiting action from Gov. Janet Mills. It would allow the region to export renewable energy to the rest of the northeast, which legislators and advocates hope will bolster economic development in one of the state’s most rural areas. It also solicits bids on new renewable power plants in northern Maine — a potential source of new jobs and tax revenues.