Power line upgrade for U.P. is scaled back
By Thomas Content of the Journal Sentine
The first phase of a power line upgrade designed in response to a blackout that gripped Michigan’s Upper Peninsula last year has been scaled back after concerns that a local utility’s plan was taking a sledgehammer to a tack.
The board of directors of the Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator last week signed off on a $280 million upgrade that it said would ensure something gets done soon to upgrade the system while a broader study of the power needs in upper Michigan is conducted.
Customer and conservation groups have weighed in on the plan, which would service northern Wisconsin as well as the U.P., criticizing it as one that benefits Michigan and iron ore mines there much more than it does Wisconsin.
Instead, the transmission overseer for the Midwest power grid adopted what it views as a necessary project after the blackout – a $280 million project. Instead of a new high-voltage, 345,000-volt line stretching 115 miles, as proposed by ATC, the Midwest group approved a 40-mile line stretching from Green Bay to Oconto Falls.
Read more at JSOnline.