Power Purchase Agreement with ReEnergy Livermore Falls Exceeds Economic Benefit Goals

The ReEnergy Livermore Falls biomass power facility has provided $41.5 million in in-state economic benefits over the first two years of its long-term power purchase agreement with Central Maine Power, according to a detailed report submitted to the Maine Public Utilities Commission.

ReEnergy Livermore Falls has a 20-year fixed-price contract to sell a portion of its electricity to Central Maine Power that commenced in January 2021. This was as a result of a Feb. 2020 RFP issued by the Maine Public Utilities Commission. (During the 2019 legislative session, the Maine Legislature enacted “An Act To Reform Maine’s Renewable Portfolio Standard, which directed the Commission to conduct two competitive solicitation processes to procure renewable energy from new and existing resources; the second procurement was conducted in 2021).

As part of the bid evaluation as well as the contract, the facility is required to provide Economic Benefit Obligations (“EBO”) to the State that meet or exceed the amounts indicated in the bid. These EBO are calculated and reviewed on an annual basis by ReEnergy and the Maine Public Utilities Commission. The benefits come in the form of capital investments, purchases of goods and services, taxes paid to Maine jurisdictions, purchases of wood fuel, and Maine-based jobs.

In the first year of the contract (2021), Livermore Falls provided an economic benefit value of $20.56 million, which was 14% higher than the amount bid into the contract. In the second year of the contract (2022), the facility again exceed the amount of economic benefits in the bid, providing an economic value of $20.9 million. Cumulatively, the facility achieved benefits that were 18% higher than the amount bid into the contract. The Maine Public Utilities Commission has accepted ReEnergy’s EBO report and has determined that no contract adjustments are necessary.

“The long-term contract provides much-needed revenue certainty to the Livermore Falls facility while also creating significant benefits to the state of Maine,” said Regional Manager Mark Thibodeau. “The biomass industry in Maine has significant economic impacts and supports hundreds of jobs in the state.  Many logging companies and sawmills in Maine are heavily reliant on the revenue streams from the purchase of fuel by biomass power producers.  These forest products companies make up the foundation of many rural regional economies in the state and contribute significantly to the state’s economy.

Thibodeau said that ReEnergy’s biomass facilities in Livermore Falls and Stratton are available as shovel-ready sites for co-located industry, capable of providing steam and behind-the-meter electricity. They also provide environmental benefits by supporting working forests, which sequester carbon, and provide fuel diversity and grid reliability benefits.

In this time of high electricity costs, the contract also provides a ratepayer benefits, Thibodeau said.

ReEnergy Livermore Falls’ fixed-price energy contract helps stabilize the facility by providing a certain long-term revenue stream, while also stabilizing the price of power incurred by electricity customers in the state, serving as a hedge against  the volatile rising prices seen in energy markets recently. Over the course of the first 24 months of the agreement, Livermore Falls has provided net energy market payments to Central Maine Power of $4.2 million, which go toward mitigating customer costs. Because elevated electricity prices are projected to continue over the next few years, these ratepayer benefits are expected to continue.

About ReEnergy Biomass Maine LLC

ReEnergy Biomass Maine LLC operates two biomass facilities in Maine. ReEnergy Stratton, a 48-megawatt biomass power facility located in the Village of Stratton and the Town of Eustis in Franklin County, produces approximately 355,000 net megawatt-hours of electricity each year — enough to supply about 46,000 homes. A portion of ReEnergy Stratton’s electricity is sold to the adjacent Stratton Lumber mill, while the balance is supplied into the regional electricity grid. ReEnergy Livermore Falls, a 39-megawatt biomass power facility located in Livermore Falls in Androscoggin County, has the capacity to produce approximately 284,000 net megawatt-hours of electricity each year — enough to supply about 37,000 homes. The facilities are owned by ReEnergy Biomass Operations LLC and ReGenerate Energy Holdings, LLC.

Both facilities generate baseload renewable electricity using sustainably harvested logging residue and mill residue that is procured from approximately 100 large and small logging and wood processing companies and approximately 20 sawmills. In addition to the 48 full-time employees at the two sites, the operations of the two ReEnergy facilities are estimated to support an average of an additional 259 jobs per year through indirect and induced impacts.

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