Brookfield Power, Emera refinance 610-MW Bear Swamp

Brookfield Power Inc. and Emera Inc. announced May 4 they completed a $125 million loan agreement for their joint venture, which operates the 610-MW Bear Swamp pumped-storage project in northern Massachusetts.

Bear Swamp Power Co. LLC, the joint venture, operates two hydropower plants in the project (No. 2669), 600-MW Bear Swamp pumped-storage and 10-MW Fife Brook, on the Deerfield River. The loan is secured by the assets of Bear Swamp and is due May 2012.

Proceeds of the financing will be distributed equally to the joint venture partners. Brookfield Power intends to use its portion of the loan money to replace other debt on assets, a company spokesman said. The partners bought the project for $92 million from a creditors group in 2005. At one time it was owned by USGen New England.

The Bank of Nova Scotia and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce led a syndicate of lenders that provided the new financing.

New York’s Long Island Power Authority has agreed to buy up to 345 MW of capacity from the project, to be delivered over the Cross-Sound Cable between New Haven, Conn., and Shoreham, N.Y.

Brookfield Power in headquartered in Gatineau, Quebec. It includes the generating, transmission, distribution, and marketing operations of Brookfield Asset Management Inc. Emera, an energy and service company, is based in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

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