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Nova Scotia, Ottawa butt heads over Atlantic Loop as feds look for summer agreement

HALIFAX — The federal government is hoping to reach a deal this summer to develop the Atlantic Loop energy project, but Nova Scotia isn’t on board.

Documents shared by a federal source close to negotiations show the project would include a power line connecting Quebec and New Brunswick and another one connecting New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.

The line between Quebec and New Brunswick is estimated to cost $6.1 billion, while the other would cost $700 million.

The documents dated last month say the federal government was hoping an agreement in principle to develop the project would be in place some time this summer.

The source, who communicated on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly, says Canada has also offered to invest $4.5 billion to help the project along.

But a spokesperson for Nova Scotia Premier Tim Houston says that investment is a loan that would have to be repaid by the province — meaning that ratepayers would pay for infrastructure in Quebec.

“We obviously cannot support a proposal where Nova Scotians pay more,” Meagan Byrd, Houston’s press secretary, said in an email.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 16, 2023.

The Canadian Press

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