By March 27, 2017 Read More →

Alberta government launches bidding for renewable energy program


Alberta Energy Minister Marg McQuaid-Boyd (yellow jacket) with Calgary MLAs, SAIT officials and graduates

Renewable Electricity Program will support development of 5,000 megawatts of renewable electricity capacity by 2030

Alberta’s Renewable Electricity Program is expected to attract at least $10.5 billion of investment into the Alberta economy by 2030, creating more than 7,200 jobs for Albertans, according to an Alberta Government press release.

The Alberta Electric System Operator is set to open the first of a series of competitions to create greener energy in the province, putting Alberta on track to achieve its target of 30 per cent renewable electricity by 2030.

“We’re excited to kick off our program to create jobs, diversify our economy and increase private-sector investment in Alberta’s electricity system. I’ve been hearing a lot of interest from industry in anticipation of this launch. This will be a competitive process, bringing the most renewable generation online at the lowest cost,” said Margaret McCuaig-Boyd, Minister of Energy.

The first competition will see companies bidding to provide up to 400 megawatts of renewable electricity, which could power up to 170,000 homes.
Successful projects will be announced around the end of the year. The expression of interest stage officially opens on March 31.

The program will not be funded by consumer electricity charges. Successful projects will be private investments supported by carbon revenues from large industrial emitters.

As a competition-driven process, it will achieve the most renewable energy development for our investment, keeping costs as low as possible while maintaining a reliable and sustainable electricity system.

“The renewables sector is one of the key areas of growth for Calgary as we become a green energy hub. It is an important element of our overall position as a centre of excellence in all things energy,” said Mary Moran, president and CEO, Calgary Economic Development.

The projects are expected to be operational by the end of 2019. In total, the Renewable Electricity Program will support the development of 5,000 megawatts of renewable electricity capacity by 2030.

“Since graduating in 2015, I’ve seen exponential growth in the number of jobs in areas of wind and solar technologies. I’m looking forward to even more jobs and investment as this industry thrives and expands in Alberta,” Kai Fahrion, SAIT Red Seal electrician alumnus and energy efficiency advocate.

The recent proclamation of the Renewable Electricity Act formally brings into force the Renewable Electricity Program, sets the 30 per cent of renewable electricity target and allows for the development of interim targets for the program.

In addition, it ensures that environmental protection is in place for all large renewable projects, including wind and solar projects, under the program.

An information session for companies interested in bidding will be hosted by the Alberta Electric System Operator at 1:30 p.m. on April 18 at the Westin Hotel in Calgary. More details will be available on March 31 but to RSVP, email and indicate preference to attend in person or via webinar.

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