Skip to Content
On April 16, 2016, Maine’s Governor signed a $13.5 million biomass bailout bill, LD 1676: “An Act To Establish a Process for the Procurement of Biomass Resources”, into law after it passed both houses on April 15.
The bill would authorize the Maine Public Utilities Commission to purchase up to 80 MW of power from Maine’s remaining biomass energy plants at above-market prices over two years in order to shore up demand. Funding for these purchases would come from the state’s “Rainy Day Fund” of surplus tax revenues, rather than from an increase in electricity rates, as originally proposed.
Supporters see the bill as essential to the preservation of over 1,000 jobs in the logging and biomass industries. Opponents see the bill as “corporate welfare” which will benefit JD Irving and biomass plant owner ReEnergy Holdings, with no guarantee that the plants will remain open.