What is the Lucky Corridor Transmission Project?
The Lucky Corridor Transmission Project is the infrastructure needed to use northern New Mexico’s renewable energy resources to turn the Four Corners power hub into the first renewable energy power hub in this region.
A power hub is a common point for commercial energy trading. These hubs are located in geographic regions throughout the U.S. The Four Corners hub—one of four power hubs in the Western U.S.—has historically received its power source from coal.
Unfortunately, the existing transmission network in the region does not have enough capacity to transport needed clean energy to western markets. New transmission facilities must be built to not only transport the energy, but also to encourage the development of renewable energy resources. New and more modern facilities will also serve to mitigate the risk of forest fires due to the more stringent construction standards in place today. When most of the current transmission infrastructure in northern New Mexico was built 30 to 50 years ago, standards were lower.
Northern New Mexico has the opportunity to work with Lucky Corridor, LLC to update its old electricity infrastructure and to install fiber optic cable along with the new transmission facilities. Along with those benefits, the ultimate buyers of the power pay the cost, not the local community, since this project is considered a “merchant transmission project” under federal law.
We ask the public to support the studies needed to determine exactly where the project should go, and how it should be configured, to best benefit the public. As that process evolves, the public will have ongoing opportunities for input. Local government and organizations support beginning these studies. More detailed information is available upon request. We ask you for your support for detailed studies with local,state, and federal agencies.
What are some details about the transmission facilities?
The Lucky Corridor Transmission Project consists of approximately 62 miles of new facilities, designed to carry up to 850 megawatts (MW) of electricity. The facilities would include installation of transmission structures and their foundations, substation improvements, and the potential for limited number of access roads where existing roads do not exist. While the exact route of the electric transmission is still being evaluated, the facilities are expected to be constructed in a historic transmission area across both private and federal lands. Specific details about the transmission facilities are under evaluation. Lucky Corridor, LLC is committed to finding a transmission route that runs across northern New Mexico, and that minimizes environmental impacts.
What is a megawatt? A megawatt is a unit of power equal to one million watts. A megawatt of capacity will produce electricity that equates to about the same amount of electricity consumed by 400 to 900 homes in a year
Why are new transmission facilities needed?
There are existing transmission facilities within the proposed study corridor where this project is expected to be built. Why are new transmission facilities needed? The Lucky Corridor Transmission Project would create:
- An opportunity to transport locally made clean renewable energy from the energy rich areas of northern New Mexico toward the Four Corners hub for distribution across the west—potentially New Mexico, Utah, Arizona, Wyoming, and California.
- Available transmission capacity that this world class renewable resource region needs, both to run high tech companies and to transport clean energy.
- Installation of fiber optic cable and SCADA technology to monitor facilities, which is now required by federal law. Modern construction and new maintenance practices will require best forest management for the corridor and surrounding areas. New equipment could decrease the risk of fire.
How will this project benefit me, my family, friends, and neighbors?
- It is an opportunity to bring short- and long-term tech and other jobs into the local community, both related to the transmission project and to the project’s customers’ solar and wind energy projects.
- The project would create an overall economic boost to the area.
- New jobs will be created from the construction and operation of the transmission facilities.
- New jobs will be created from the development of future renewable energy projects and the services needed to maintain them.
- The increased capacity to transmit energy will allow for the development of renewable energy projects and for high tech businesses to locate in northern New Mexico. Increased transmission capacity is likely to lead to more reliable, clean electricity.
- Indirect economic benefits would be realized from new job creation— housing, healthcare, medical, groceries, restaurants, other services, and entertainment.
- Upgraded fiber optic cable may allow local telecommunications companies to improve internet and telephone services.
- Improved air quality. Development of renewable sources, such as wind and solar, does not create long-term air quality issues.
- Decrease in water usage to make electricity from coal.