UPDATE 5-New York PSC approves 1,000-MW Québec-NY City power line

Thu Apr 18, 2013 6:04pm EDT
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* Project could provide up to 10 pct of power used in NYC

* Power line to take 3-1/2 years to build, cost $2.2 billion

* Hydro-Quebec expected to sell most power over line

* Construction to be funded by developers, not NY ratepayers

By Scott DiSavino

April 18 (Reuters) - The New York Public Service Commission on Thursday approved a plan to build the Champlain Hudson transmission line, which will be capable of moving 1,000 megawatts of hydropower from Québec to New York City.

The project will create an average of more than 300 jobs during the 3-1/2-year construction period and cost an estimated $2.2 billion, Transmission Developers Inc, a privately held unit of Blackstone Group LP, said on its website.

Transmission Developers said it would use high-voltage direct current technology for the line, which the PSC said would be like a giant extension cord from Québec to New York City.

The 335-mile (539-km) line will be built under Lake Champlain and the Hudson River and will run underground along railroad tracks and other rights of way to minimize the visual and environmental impact.   Continued...