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Impact on Climate Goals

The time to act on climate change is now, and Maine is acting. We already get over 70% of our electricity from renewable sources, and we have more solar projects in the works than the rest of the country combined. A hostile takeover of CMP and Versant Power proposed in the Pine Tree Power referendum would bog us down in bureaucratic processes for years.

History makes it clear. A government takeover of private utilities is a long, drawn-out process:

It took 13 years to transfer a just portion of Long Island’s electric and natural gas infrastructure to the Long Island Power Authority.

Legal battles cost the city of Boulder, CO $29 million over ten years before voters finally gave up on their attempt to seize the local utility there. During that period, neighboring communities made far greater advances toward clean energy by partnering with the existing privately-owned utility.

“I’ve become convinced that pursuing [a government takeover] does not help to move our clean energy goals forward. That’s the first thing. Second, it just takes so long. We need to be acting on climate change now. Our existential crisis is climate change, not utility business models.” 
— Will Toor, former mayor of Boulder and current Director of Energy for the state of Colorado