A plan is underway to turn the Hudson Valley into an energy superhighway. Proposed new high-voltage transmission lines would run through 25 Hudson Valley towns in Albany, Rensselaer, Greene, Columbia, Dutchess and Ulster counties. In addition to potentially doubling the height of current towers—up to 165 feet tall—these projects could double the width of utility corridors—and possibly take private property by eminent domain.
If any one of the proposed projects gets the green light, it could imperil the valley’s scenic beauty, productive farmland, important cultural and historic assets, and critical wildlife habitats. As a result, they pose very real threats to growing tourism and agricultural economies essential for sustaining the region’s prosperity and attracting new businesses. In addition, proposed lines that cross the Hudson River could jeopardize water quality and aquatic resources.
The Hudson Valley Smart Energy Coalition is working to ensure that before any project receives the necessary permits, a full assessment is undertaken of more sustainable options that won’t damage the environment. These include utilizing current transmission infrastructure, burying the lines underground or relying on local clean power sources.