Letter: A modest proposal on Northern Pass

Last modified: 12/9/2015 6:29:05 AM
I have decided to stop fighting Northern Pass, and say “Bienvenue” (“Welcome!”) as long as it’s buried along existing rights of way.

My grandfather Carl Harrigan, a 43-year Boston and Maine track worker, was a strong union man. He would want local people to get as many jobs as possible out of getting the power from Canada down to Hartford and New York. But he knew his manners, and if New Hampshire is (metaphorically speaking) a house that’s just in the way, he would at least want a guest to wipe his boots on the way through.

The Department of Energy figures that burial will generate twice as many local jobs as stringing wires over three years of construction, and twice the local economic impact over the long run. However, a scar is a scar, especially across countryside that doesn’t already have one, so I’ll pass on nearly 40 miles of a totally new scar from the Canadian border down to Groveton.

But if Northern Pass would do us just this one teeny tiny little favor on that 40-mile business, and bury the whole thing along existing rights of way, I’d be for it. I’d do this in solidarity with my friends and neighbors who run backhoes and excavators, and haul dug-up material and gravel and ledgepack, and do paving and landscaping, and I’d even grab a shovel or a flag myself if Social Security keeps lagging behind the cost of living.



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