Plains & Eastern Clean Line to Add Hundreds of Thousands in Revenues to White County

Mar 25th, 2015 | By | Category: News and Features

HOUSTON (March 23, 2015) –Clean Line Energy (Clean Line) today announced that White County will receive an estimated $300,000 per year in ad valorem payments and other revenues for the life of the Plains & Eastern Clean Line electric transmission project. In addition to these payments, Clean Line has also committed to more than $129,000 in voluntary infrastructure payments to counties in Arkansas. Clean Line will make over $30 million in payments to Arkansas landowners for easements, upfront structure payments and other compensation.

The Plains & Eastern Clean Line will facilitate an approximately half-billion dollar investment in Arkansas and will deliver 500 megawatts of low-cost, wind power to Arkansas, doubling the amount of low-cost wind energy the Natural State currently purchases.  The Plains & Eastern Clean Line includes a converter station located in central Arkansas, which will provide Arkansas with access to affordable, domestic power for years to come.  That converter station will deliver enough energy to serve the equivalent of roughly 160,000 Arkansas homes annually.

“We expect to employ hundreds of Arkansans directly constructing this important infrastructure project; the project will also will benefit Arkansas in other important ways,” said Michael Skelly, President of Clean Line. “The Plains & Eastern Clean Line will provide a new source of clean and inexpensive power to the Natural State.  Clean Line will pay over $30 million to Arkansas landowners for the market value of easements, upfront structure payments and other compensation.  We will also make over $5 million in annual ad valorem payments or county revenue payments. We are committed to making contributions that will directly support Arkansas educators, students and community services.”

Revenues for White County:

$300,000 in estimated annual ad valorem payments benefiting schools and other county services over the life of the project

$129,000 in a voluntary infrastructure payment

Note: the estimates for ad valorem payments to all 12 counties along the route in Arkansas are sourced from Table 3.13-44 of the Plains & Eastern Clean Line Draft Environmental Impact Statement and are based on an assumed value for the transmission line of $2 million per mile, the state assessment ratio of 20%, and county-specific millage rates identified for each county in 2012.  The estimates are also published online at: http://www.plainsandeasterncleanline.com/site/page/arkansas-landowner-information.

Working with Landowners

Clean Line has received feedback from thousands of landowners and other stakeholders and has used that information to modify and refine possible routes for the transmission line. Input from landowners is very important to help to avoid or minimize any impacts to land use and address parcel specific concerns.

“Clean Line has been very forthright, fair, and honest in discussing the project with me,” said Janet Futrell, Arkansas landowner.  “I am looking forward to seeing the project move forward.”

Clean Line seeks to negotiate all easement agreements on a voluntary basis.  Landowner compensation includes 100% of the fair market value of the land within the easement area and additional payments for each transmission structure on the landowner’s property, which will be paid as a one-time payment or annually for the life of the project.  The property will still belong to the landowner and can be utilized for activities such as farming, grazing cattle, and other activities that do not interfere with the operation of the transmission line.

Additional Economic Benefits to Arkansas

Hundreds of jobs supported. Clean Line has agreed to purchase 25 million feet of conductor from General Cable in Malvern, Arkansas – this order could keep the plant’s transmission line business running consistently for two years. The project will also provide indirect employment support, as construction crews will need to stay at local hotels, eat at local restaurants, buy raw materials from local suppliers, etc.

More than half a billion dollar investment for the transmission line in Arkansas, including a $100 million investment for a converter station located in central Arkansas, which will provide Arkansas with access to affordable, domestic power.

Improvement in air quality by providing 500 megawatts of low-cost clean power to Arkansas.  The project will deliver enough energy to serve the equivalent of roughly 160,000 Arkansas homes and will more than double the supply of wind power currently acquired by the state.  By diversifying Arkansas’ mix of electricity sources, it will also provide consumers further protection against utility rate hikes in the future if the cost of natural gas or coal fired generation increases.

Project Status

The Plains & Eastern Clean Line project is undergoing an extensive environmental review under the National Environmental Policy Act, led by the Department of Energy (DOE) and in coordination with the Southwestern Power Administration. In December 2014, DOE issued the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Plains & Eastern Clean Line. The release of the Draft EIS initiated a 120-day public comment period that is scheduled to conclude in April 2015. Based on the current schedule, Clean Line anticipates that DOE will issue a Final EIS later in 2015; that document will consider and respond to comments received. Construction of the Plains & Eastern Clean Line is estimated to begin in 2016 and will require approximately two to three years to complete. The Plains & Eastern Clean Line is expected to begin delivering electricity as early as 2018 and will provide clean power to more than one million American homes, providing public benefits for years to come.

More information on the Plains & Eastern Clean Line can be found at www.plainsandeasterncleanline.com.

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About Clean Line Energy Partners: Clean Line’s mission is to connect abundant, renewable energy resources to areas that have a high demand for clean, reliable energy. Clean Line is developing a series of transmission projects to move renewable energy to market. For more information please visit www.cleanlineenergy.com.