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Lawmakers weigh bill to boost hydro, wind power

BOSTON (AP) — Legislation that could make hydro and wind power a bigger part of the state’s overall energy mix is expected to win approval in the House.

The bill slated for debate on Wednesday would require utilities to solicit long-term contracts for importing an additional 1,200 megawatts each of Canadian hydroelectricity and offshore wind.

Republican Gov. Charlie Baker and Democratic leaders in the Legislature have called the measure one of the most important among those still pending before lawmakers as the two-year session winds down in the coming weeks.

Baker says the state needs to tap into new sources of energy to replace power that is leaving the regional electricity grid as older generating plants are retired.

Some environmental groups say the House bill doesn’t go far enough in promoting renewable energy.

Related news: Coal vs. renewables: GOP states benefiting from shift to wind and solar energy

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