Permit Approval Status

The Northern Pass project will need to meet all necessary federal and state permitting requirements for the proposed transmission line.

Below are a list of approvals and actions to date. For a more complete description of the permitting process and requirements, visit the Permitting and Public Input page. This permitting process includes many opportunities for public input including a series of public information sessions and open houses in communities along the proposed route.

Status of Approvals

Federal Decisions

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)

  • The DOE issued Presidential Permit for Northern Pass in November 16, 2017.
  • The U.S. Forest Service released its final Record of Decision (ROD) on September 6, 2017 and its final ROD on January 5, 2018.
  • The DOE issued the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) on August 10, 2017.
  • The DOE accepted comments on the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and the Supplement until April 4th, 2016. The DOE also held four public hearings on the draft Environmental Impact Statement the week of March 7.
  • The DOE issued its draft EIS on July 21, 2015 and its Supplement on November 12, 2015. 
  • The DOE held four public scoping meetings throughout the state between September 23 and September 26, 2013. 
  • The Northern Pass announced an improved project design and a new, preferred route on June 27, 2013. The project submitted an amended application for a Presidential Permit to the Department of Energy which reflects key developments in the project since the filing of the original application on October 14, 2010.
  • The project submitted a letter to the DOE on April 12, 2011, withdrawing support for some routing alternatives. The letter also requested an extension of the public scoping period for the identification of an improved route and to allow for additional public comment.
  • The DOE held public scoping meetings in seven locations in New Hampshire between March 14 and March 20, 2011
  • An addendum to the Presidential Permit application was submitted in February 2011.
  • The project submitted its Presidential Permit application to the DOE in October 2010.

The U.S. Department of Energy has created the Northern Pass EIS website to provide information for those interested in the project’s progress. Here you will find information on the federal permitting process and documents related to the project.

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC)

State Decisions

New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee (SEC)

  • The SEC provided an oral decision on Northern Pass on February 1 and a written order was issued on March 30. 
  • 70 days of public hearings were held in 2017 to hear testimony on the project.
  • A series of five post-application Public Information Sessions were held in January 2016. Another set of seven public hearings were held in March, May and June of 2016.
  • The NH SEC issued an order on December 18, 2015, stating that the Northern Pass application is complete.
  • The state's comprehensive SEC review process began on October 19, 2015, when the Northern Pass project filed an application for sitting approval with the SEC. The SEC application includes separate applications required for permits and approvals from DES, DOT and the PUC.
  • Northern Pass held a series of five pre-application Public Information Sessions in September 2015 in the following counties: Coös, Belknap, Grafton, Merrimack, and Rockingham. These sessions were an opportunity for the public to learn more about the project and to submit their comments.

Canadian Decisions

The Canadian National Energy Board approved construction of Northern Pass facilities on the Canadian side of the border in March 2018. 

If you are looking for more details about the Northern Pass permitting process, you can find project filings in the Northern Pass online document library.