The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) applauds the Alberta Government’s announcement that it will legislate and initiate a process in November to procure the first 400 MW of its 5,000-MW renewables’ target. The province is planning for 5,000 MW of new renewable energy to meet 30% of electricity demand in the province by 2030.
This announcement was made by Alberta Environment Minister Shannon Phillips at CanWEA’s Annual Conference and Exhibition in Calgary.
CanWEA looks forward to working with the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) to flesh out further implementation details of the procurement process and expects strong participation from the wind energy industry in upcoming requests for information, qualifications, and proposals.
“Alberta’s renewable energy target is ambitious and achievable and enshrining the target in legislation makes it clear to investors that Alberta will be Canada’s largest market for new wind-energy investment for at least the next decade,” said Robert Hornung, CanWEA President.
Meeting Alberta’s renewable energy targets with wind energy would result in over $10 billion of investment, creating thousands of construction jobs and hundreds of jobs in operations in maintenance. Wind energy projects will also provide significant economic benefits to rural communities in Alberta through property tax payments to municipalities and lease payments to landowners.
“Alberta’s massive wind energy potential represents a largely untapped and under-utilized resource,” added Hornung. “With this announcement, the Alberta Government has created an investment climate that will see significantly more interest and investment in the Alberta wind energy market than we have seen in the past – with the first new projects in the ground and operating by 2019.”
Wind energy has been the largest source of new electricity generating capacity in Canada over the last 10 years and its cost competitiveness, combined with the fact that it does not produce any greenhouse gas emissions, ensures that it will continue to play a growing role in electricity generation in Canada going forward.
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