The proposed Champlain Hudson Power Express (CHPE) is a 333-mile long 1,250-megawatt high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission corridor consisting of bi-directional cables — two cables side by side running to and from Quebec to New York City. 110 miles of these cables will be under the Hudson River carrying hydroelectricity produced by megadams on Indigenous lands.

Click here to access our NAMRA comments regarding CHPE and importing Canadian hydropower.

New York Governor Hochul and the Public Service Commission must support truly sustainable, homegrown sources of energy – not massive Hydro-Quebec dams, or electric cables buried in the Hudson River. We must not subsidize this dirty, damaging project. We must promote in-state renewable energy generation and the competing New York Power Authority’s Clean Path NY contract as competition to CHPE.

We must continue to alert New York Governor Hochul, the Public Service Commission, and New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to promote the New York Power Authority (NYPA) Clean Path New York project (CPNY) which would use renewable energy made in New York as an alternative to the destructive CHPE. Please continue to demand that New York not procure Canadian hydropower.

Tell New York and Governor Kathy Hochul to not procure Canadian hydropower extracted from Indigenous lands in Canada: 

Phone: (518)-474-8390

Send an electronic message

NYSERDA had requested bids to provide electricity to New York City. Hydro-Quebec, CHPE, and Clean Path NY were selected as recommendations which are now under review. We demand that NYSERDA not procure Canadian hydropower extracted from Indigenous lands in Canada.

Contact NYSERDA and demand that they reject CHPE and promote only in-state renewable energy via the Clean Path NY.

Phone: (212)-971-5342

Email: info@nyserda.ny.gov

CHPE now has three case numbers for its proceedings. All comments are posted within these sites:

Champlain Hudson Power Express Permit (Case No. 10-T-0139): Comments are still being accepted by the PSC on an ongoing basis. https://documents.dps.ny.gov/public/MatterManagement/CaseMaster.aspx?MatterCaseNo 10-T-0139

Proceeding on Large-Scale Renewables – Contracts under review for procurements from Champlain Hudson Power Express and Clean Path New York project (Case No. 15-E-0302) Comments were due by March 7th (This date has lapsed, submissions can be reviewed by clicking the link) https://documents.dps.ny.gov/public/MatterManagement/CaseMaster.aspx?MatterCaseNo=15-E-0302

CHPE LLC and CHPE Properties, Inc. Petition and Order Granting Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (No. 21-01686/21-E-0425) – Comments are still being accepted on an ongoing basis. There was a public hearing on Tuesday, February 15th. https://documents.dps.ny.gov/public/MatterManagement/CaseMaster.aspx?MatterCaseNo=21-E-0425

Securities Issuance: (No. 20-02473/20-E-0528) This new webpage is in tandem with the above (21-01686/21-E-0425) which adds to confusion. https://documents.dps.ny.gov/public/MatterManagement/CaseMaster.aspx?MatterCaseNo=20-E-0598&CaseSearch=Search

April 13, 2022 – First Nations speak out on proposed hydropower for New York City

On April 14, 2022, the New York Public Service Commission voted 5-2 in favor of the Clean Energy Standard bids which included both the in-state Clean Path New York and Blackstone’s Champlain Hudson Power Express. While this decision is a setback, we will continue the fight to defend rivers and communities from CHPE.

Comments from the New York City Environmental Justice Alliance (NYC-EJA) urging the NY Public Service Commission to deny the proposed contract for CHPE and instead direct NYSERDA to pursue renewable electricity produced in-state.

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See comments below provided by the Independent Power Producers on the contract details regarding case number 15-E-0302. We have common ground with their stance on CHPE and why it’s not in the best interest of New Yorkers. Their review does not include the consequences of megadams in Canada and the consequences onto First Nations by these facilities. IPPNY members companies produce a majority of New York’s electricity utilizing almost every generation technology available.

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Letter in support of NYPA Clean Path NY from James Gennaro, New York City Council, Chair of Environmental Protection Committee preferring in-state electricity generation.

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Lucien Wabanonik is an elected councilor with Lac Simon’s band council in Quebec. Lucien’s community has been heavily impacted by megadam development. Here is his message to New Yorkers and elected officials that are considering hydropower imports.

CHPE Background

In 2013, the New York Public Service Commission (PSC) issued a permit called a Certificate of Environmental Compatibility and Public Need for the 333-mile cable. See the permit here: CHPE NYS PSC Case 10-T-0139 Since then, Blackstone Group, has amended the permit three times. The project no longer resembles the project the PSC approved in 2013.

Blackstone Group, one of the world’s largest private equity and hedge fund firms is the developer of CHPE. It has created limited liability corporations and calls the developer “Transmission Developers Inc.” (TDI). The $3 billion project will create only 26 direct, full-time jobs for New Yorkers according to Blackstone’s 2014 environmental impact statement. The electricity will be generated by Hydro-Quebec at its 63 generating stations in remote areas of Quebec and Labrador. Hydro-Quebec is government-owned and one of the largest utilities in the Western Hemisphere.

Blackstone cannot start construction of CHPE without a 25-year contract with a buyer for 75% of the electricity. At this time, no contract has been announced. Blackstone had used Brattle Group to solicit offers of interest for CHPE.

Since Earth Day Day 2019, Mayor de Blasio and his administration have been secretly negotiating to buy electricity from Blackstone via CHPE. We call on the Mayor’s administration to withdraw from negotiations with Hydro-Quebec and Blackstone and instead pursue energy efficiency and renewable energy options locally in New York City. The New York City building decarbonization law, Local Law 97, allows for building owners to procure Renewable Energy Credits (RECS) instead of actually reducing their emissions. NAMRA does not support this provision which will promote Renewable Energy Credits from megadams.

Hydropower from Canada will not help New York meet its climate goals as megadams and their reservoirs are associated with the generation of greenhouse gas emissions.

December 3, 2021 – The potential installation of CHPE will compromise the drinking water of seven municipalities as detailed in the letter below.

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October 20, 2021 – New York Public Service Commission (PSC) held a public statement hearing on a petition filed by CHPE LLC and CHPE Properties, Inc. to amend a Certificate of Environmental Compatability and Public Need authorizing the building, operation, and maintenance of this project.

The initial certificate was granted in 2013 and since then, the New York PSC has granted amendments to the certificate authorizing changes regarding Project construction filings and filing requirements, approving route modifications, and authorizing modifications to increase Project capacity from 1,000 to 1,250 megawatts (MWs). These amendments are substantive and significant issues that require further studies.

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September 20, 2021Press Release: New York Selects Destructive Canadian Hydropower from Hydro-Quebec along with NYPA Clean Path as In-State Supply

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Recent research by Northbridge Energy Partners finds that new hydropower transmission corridors from Canada to the U.S. are linked to potential new dam construction.

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On July 12, 2021, Hudson Riverkeeper sent a letter to former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo regarding the state’s selection process for projects to receive Tier 4 renewable energy credits. Riverkeeper urged Cuomo to take into full account the impacts of proposed projects on the Hudson River and at their source. CHPE would be a disaster for the Hudson River as well as its ecosystems and communities. The source of the power that CHPE would carry are Canadian megadams which damage rivers, violate human rights, and release potent greenhouse gases.

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On May 5, 2021, the Innu First Nation of Pessamit, the Atikamekw First Nation of Wemotaci, and the three Anishnabek First Nations of Pikogan, Lac Simon, and Kitcisakik sent a joint letter to New York City Deputy Mayor Dean Fuleihan denouncing and condemning the detrimental effects that CHPE would have on human rights, ancestral territories, climate change, and ecosystems. New York City is obligated to respect the rights of First Nations, their ancestral territories and obtain free prior and informed consent.

“Not a single impact assessment has been carried out for the construction of thirty-three (33) power stations in our traditional territories, which generate 36% of Hydro-Québec’s total installed capacity.”

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November 29, 2020: The Towboat and Harbor Carriers Association of New York & New Jersey request that CHPE’s cable route application on the Hudson River be denied

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November 17, 2020: Religious Organizations Along the River (ROAR) objects to CHPE.

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See October 15th, 2020 order adopting modifications to the Clean Energy Standard: NYS Clean Energy Standard Tier 4 (hydroelectricity from Canada)

On October 8, 2020, A Notice of Violations of the Endangered Species Act was sent by the Center for Biological Diversity, NAMRA and the Innu Nation to the U.S. Department of Energy warning them that the Champlain Hudson Power Express (CHPE) hydropower corridor from Canada to New York City will harm threatened Atlantic Sturgeon, the climate and Indigenous front-line communities. The 336-mile CHPE cable will be buried under the Hudson River and Lake Champlain disturbing sturgeon and potentially releasing toxic pollutants buried in the river. 

April 16, 2020: CHPE application to amend Federal Permit

On May 5, 2020, NAMRA signed onto the Peoples Climate Movement of New York released an open letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Comptroller Scott Stringer, Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, Borough Presidents Adams, Brewer, Diaz Jr., Lee, and Oddo, Council Speaker Corey Johnson and All Members of the NYC Council on the connection between the COVID-19 crisis, the climate crisis, and the bold next steps forward for the economic crisis. This letter asks New York leaders to commit to fighting the climate crisis in a fair, just, and equitable way.

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CHPE is not a fair, just, or equitable solution to the climate or economic crisis that New York faces. It places the burdens of American electricity use on the backs of front-line, Indigenous communities in Canada where this power is being produced by megadams.

May 27, 2020: NAMRA’s Response to Governor Cuomo’s proposal to import more Canadian hydropower and build a transmission corridor (CHPE) from Canada to New York:

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April 29, 2020: Comments to the New York Public Service Commission from the Innu Nation of Labrador

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November 18-19, 2019: Northeast U.S. Speaking Tour – held the third annual Megadams = Megadamage Speaking Tour this past November. This tour brought Indigenous and allied speakers from hydro-affected communities in Canada to the Northeast United States to speak with the general public and key decision-makers on the topic of Canadian hydropower and transmission corridors such as NECEC and the detrimental effects that these have on their communities and the environment. To view recordings of the tour, click here.

November 18, 2019: Hudson Riverkeeper withdraws support for CHPE.

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On April 22, 2019, New York City Mayor Bill DiBlasio announced a Green New Deal for the City which includes negotiations towards Hydro-Quebec power from Canada. In a simultaneous press release, Hydro-Quebec embraced the chance to get the stalled CHPE project going.

CHPE is fraught with problems and NAMRA opposes the project on environmental and social justice grounds. Unfortunately, most of the permits are in place.

CHPE will cost an estimated $2.2 billion to construct. The project’s main investor is Blackstone Group, L.P., an American multinational private equity, alternative asset management, and financial services firm based in New York City. As the largest alternative investment firm in the world, Blackstone specializes in private equity, credit, and hedge fund investment strategies.

The $2.2 billion that will be invested in the Blackstone CHPE project is money that should be spent on local energy efficiency and renewable energy projects thus creating local, long-term, and sustainable jobs. Locking in this infrastructure for destructive Canadian hydropower creates a disincentive for innovative, local energy solutions. CHPE is a greenwash and climate disaster.

As of 2020, CHPE faces major roadblocks:

-Before it can begin construction, CHPE has to have a 2020 contract with a buyer for 75% of the 1,000 MW which it does not have as of December 2020 (required by the PSC permit)

Indigenous First Nations are challenging Blackstone’s legal right to sell this electricity to New York, claiming Hydro-Quebec has unlawfully built and operated hydropower installations on their ancestral lands for over 50 years www.50yearspastdue. ca and www.quebechydroclash.com

-The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has to provide notice and comment for changes to the CHPE route and must issue a revised Presidential Permit for the new route (stated in the new Presidential Permit 481) The 2014 CHPE US Department of Energy Presidential Permit was transferred in 2020 to a limited liability company and a new permit issued to a new entity, CHPE, LLC (Presidential Permit 481, July 21, 2020). NAMRA Comments to the Department of Energy on CHPE (May 18, 2020) Center for Biological Diversity, NAMRA and the Innu Nation also assert an EIS is needed for impacts on rivers, dams, the climate and Indigenous rights in Canada – environmental, economic and social impacts never studied by the PSC or DOE.

-The U.S. Department of Energy and National Marine Fisheries Service have to undertake and complete a satisfactory biological report of endangered Atlantic Sturgeon habitat that will be impacted by burying the cables in the Hudson River

-Concerns of seven municipalities on the Hudson River that get their drinking water from the River have to be addressed Hudson River Drinking Water Intermunicipal Council Comments (December 1, 2020)

-Concerns about navigation and safety in the Hudson River raised by the Tow Boat and Harbor Carriers Association of N.Y./N.J. have to be addressed Towboat and Harbor Carriers Association of NY/NJ Comments November 2020

-The environmental impact study for CHPE’s 2013 permit is outdated. EIS is here: 2014 CHPE Environmental Impact Statement and 2010 CHPE US Army Corps of Engineers Permit Application is here. CHPE keeps getting extension of the original permit but must do a new environmental impact statement for the route changes and newly designated Atlantic Sturgeon habitat. See, 2015 CHPE US Army Corps of Engineers Permit

On October 9, 2020, CHPE applied to the PSC for permission to move segments of the cable route, cooling stations, and cable splices in two locations: 1. from an industrial park in the Bronx to Randall’s Island Park, and 2. to a new route through Route 9W in Rockland County, NY. See North American Megadam Resistance Comments filed with PSC December 9, 2020.

In November, 2019 Riverkeeper, a member of the Waterkeeper Alliance, withdrew its support for CHPE citing environmental concerns, impacts on Indigenous communities in Canada, and the new dams being built in Canada for exporting hydroelectricity to New York. November 18, 2019, Hudson Riverkeeper Withdraws Support for CHPE

In 2019 and 2020, CHPE previously sought permit modifications from the PSC, which NAMRA opposed. CHPE also sought a new Presidential Permit to transfer the project to a new shell limited liability corporation. Some of the many opposition comments are below:

Solidarity Committee of the Capital District Comments (May 27, 2020)

Lakeside Farms Comments (January 8, 2020)

Stony Point Action Committee for the Environment Comments (May 23, 2020)

Stony Point Action Committee for the Environment Comments (June 2, 2020)

Stony Point Action Committee for the Environment Comments (June 15, 2020)

North American Megadam Resistance Alliance Comments (June 2, 2020)

Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter Comments (June 15, 2020)

Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter Member Comments (April 19, 2012)

New York Public Service Commission Public Hearing Transcript (December 1, 2020)

CHPE’s October 9, 2020 permit application documents are here:

October 9, 2020 Letter for CHPE Application

Appendices to CHPE’s October 9 2020 Application:

Appendix A USGS Maps

Appendix B NYSDOT maps

Appendix C Randall’s Island Route

Appendix D Rockland County Splice Locations

Appendix E Letter from NYC DCAS on route through Randall’s Island Park

Appendix G Local Laws

Appendix F Coastal Consistency Analysis

2019 CHPE Petition for Route Modification

Filed Documents and Additional Public Comments

Senator McCallum Request for Investigation (May 30, 2019)

Resources:

Understanding the True Impacts of Champlain Hudson Power Express (Energyzt Report)

Bill de Blasio’s energy plan isn’t as green as it looks Guardian, 2019

Sierra Club Atlantic Chapter Fact Sheet on Canadian hydropower and NYC’s energy needs

Hydro-Quebec Hertel-New York Interconnection

2019 NAMRA CHPE Press Release

Petition: Support Equitable Energy Solutions for New York and Reject Canadian Hydroelectricity!