Hydro-Quebec subsidiary to buy hydropower facilities in New England

Published on October 14, 2022 by Dave Kovaleski

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HQI US Holding, a subsidiary of Hydro-Québec, is acquiring Great River Hydro, which owns 13 hydropower generating stations in New England.

The 13 facilities — located along New England’s Connecticut and Deerfield rivers in the states of Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts — have a total installed capacity of 589 megawatts. Great River Hydro is buying the facilities from affiliates of ArcLight Capital Partners for approximately $2 billion.

With this purchase, Hydro-Québec is acquiring the largest hydropower fleet in New England. These facilities have set ambitious decarbonization and electrification objectives, so the amount of electricity generated from these renewable energy sources is poised to increase sharply.

“Hydro-Québec has a long-term energy partnership with New England, as we have been exporting our hydropower to the region since the 1980s,” Sophie Brochu, president and CEO of Hydro-Québec, said. “This acquisition represents a unique opportunity to combine our know-how in managing and leveraging hydro facilities with Great River Hydro’s thorough understanding of the New England market. By combining our strengths, we can support the development of new renewable energy projects in a market where such resources are in high demand.”

“We are excited to be joining Hydro-Québec in the coming months,” Great River Hydro President and CEO Scott Hall said. “Their deep knowledge of the hydroelectric industry and long history in the New England market gives us tremendous confidence that Great River Hydro is an ideal fit, and we look forward to continuing to provide clean, renewable hydroelectricity to our New England neighbors for years to come.”

Great River Hydro features 13 cascading generating stations and three storage-only reservoirs along some 310 miles (500 km) of the Connecticut and Deerfield rivers. On an annual basis, it supplies enough energy to power over 213,000 homes in New England – with one-third of the energy coming through long-term supply contracts, guaranteeing revenue stability. Also, with approximately 30,000 acres of land, the acquisition allows for the possibility of various renewable energy projects.

“We are pleased to announce this transaction with Hydro-Québec,” Dan Revers, founder and managing partner of ArcLight, said. “Together with management, ArcLight successfully transitioned Great River Hydro from a high-quality portfolio of assets to a standalone platform positioned for further growth. We are confident that Hydro-Québec will be an excellent steward to Great River Hydro’s stakeholders in the next chapter of its corporate life.”

All of the roughly 100 employees at Great River Hydro will be retained.

The transaction remains subject to customary closing conditions, including applicable regulatory approvals.

Hydro-Québec is Canada’s largest electricity producer and ranks among the world’s largest hydropower producers.