The Illinois Commerce Commission is siding with Clean Line Energy Partners in a decsion tossing out the appeals of landowners who don't want an electricity project done.
The firm is developing the Grain Belt Express -- a high voltage transmission power line that will move wind power across the midwest. Opponents say the firm isn't a utility and shouldn't have been allowed to use an expedited application process. One of those opponents is the Pike and Scott County Farm Bureau.
"Basically, it's speculators who are developing a project," says Blake Roderick, Executive Director. "I don't think they have any intention to actually operate the project once it's up and going. They have a freeway through Illinois; they're just running their power through our state, and are going to dump it into the power grid on the east coast."
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For its part, Clean Line Energy partners says they're pleased to be able to move forward.
""We are very pleased that the Commission affirmed the Grain Belt Express Clean Line will benefit Illinois consumers by providing low-cost energy and promoting competition in Illinois’ electricity market," says Mark Lawlor, Director of Development, Clean Line Energy. "The Commission’s vote today strengthens our ability to move the Grain Belt Express Clean Line project forward. We will now focus on advancing the project in Missouri, the final state where it needs approval."