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Executive Council
July 12, 2011

Lower Churchill Garners Keen Interest at NEG/ECP Conference

Development of the Lower Churchill by Newfoundland and Labrador was a central topic of discussions at the 35th annual Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers (NEG/ECP). The Honourable Kathy Dunderdale, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador, said today the level of interest by delegates in the hydroelectric project was significant.

“Accessing clean, green renewable energy sources is becoming increasingly important to jurisdictions in Canada and south of the border and this was readily apparent by the keen interest expressed in the Lower Churchill project at the Conference of New England Governors and Atlantic Premiers,” said Premier Dunderdale. “The conference provided a great opportunity for governors and premiers to discuss a number of matters of mutual interest and concern, and energy was high on the agenda. At every turn, I was met with either congratulations on our government’s work to date or requests for meetings for further discussion of the opportunities represented in our development of the Lower Churchill. Our government and Nalcor will follow up with governors in the coming days to arrange a meeting that will focus solely on Muskrat Falls.”

At the conference, multiple sessions provided opportunity for discussion of hydro generation, including a presentation by Ed Martin, President and CEO of Nalcor Energy, and Chris Huskilson, President and CEO of Emera. The partnership between Nalcor and Emera was of great interest to the governors and premiers because the companies bring together generation and transmission strengths throughout Atlantic Canada and New England. The Nalcor and Emera partnership represents an integrated solution to the renewable energy needs of the whole region. The impediments to open and non-discriminatory access to the Quebec transmission system were also highlighted during the conference – impediments which the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador bypassed through Nalcor Energy’s groundbreaking deal with Emera.

“Our number one priority for developing Muskrat Falls is to meet the electricity demands of our own province and to stabilize rates over the long term. On that basis alone, if we never sold one megawatt of power outside of this province, development of Muskrat Falls makes sense and will bring significant employment and income to the residents and businesses of Newfoundland and Labrador,” said Premier Dunderdale. “We are further maximizing the enormous benefits of this development with our ability to bring excess power to markets both in Canada and the United States, and it was obvious at the conference that all eyes are on Newfoundland and Labrador as we proceed to develop the greatest remaining undeveloped clean hydro power source in North America.”

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Media contacts:

Glenda Power
Director of Communications
Office of the Premier
Milly Brown
Press Secretary
Office of the Premier
709-729-4304, 631-8477

2011 07 12             12:00 p.m.

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