The Federal Energy Regu- latory Commission (FERC) in the US has approved the US$205M utility merger of Bangor Hydro-Electric Company and Emera.

The merger will allow Emera, a subsidiary of Nova Scotia-based NS Power Holdings, to expand its operations in the northeast.

Bangor Hydro, based in Maine, will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of NS Power. Officials plan to complete the merger in the first half of 2001.

Bangor Hydro provides electricity to 192,000 customers in the eastern region of Maine.

The utility is a member of the New England Power Pool and is interconnected with the other New England utilities to the south and with New Brunswick Power Corp in Canada to the north.

Emera is a diversified energy and services company with about 440,000 customers, while its par-ent, NS Power, is an electric utility supplying over 95% of the electric generation, transmission and distribution in Nova Scotia.