2015coverRutland, VT-Want to know what the future holds for building new electric transmission lines in Vermont? Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO) will hold two public input sessions–April 8 and 15–to share the findings and receive feedback on the draft 2015 Vermont Long-Range Transmission Plan. The plan’s central purpose is to identify where electric load growth over the next 20 years may drive the need for grid reliability investments, and to share that information in sufficient time to consider alternatives to building poles and wires. This process works as documented by VELCO’s previous collaborative successes in deferring over $140 million in transmission projects through a combination of energy efficiency, smaller local sources of power and other measures.

The plan serves as the basis for identifying and securing opportunities to unlock additional value from local generation, efficiency and customer-utility partnerships. VELCO is inviting the public because we would like to share what we now know and hear your comments, thoughts and ideas about the plan.

Every three years VELCO, the owner and operator of Vermont’s transmission system, in cooperation with ISO New England, the regional grid operator, performs a┬ádetailed analysis that identifies reliability concerns and where transmission alternatives may be used to address those concerns. VELCO collaborates with the Vermont distribution utilities, and other stakeholders to finalize the plan, which then guides grid reliability efforts. The public meetings are one of several steps leading up to a finalized long range plan.

VELCO will convene two sessions to gather input on the public review draft of the plan. The first public meeting is scheduled on April 8 at 6pm at the Green Mountain Power Energy Innovation Center in Rutland. The second meeting is scheduled on April 15 at 10am at the Capitol Plaza Hotel in Montpelier. For more details, and to review the plan and provide comments, visit www.velco.com/longrangeplan2015.