Library filed under Transmission from Canada
Ontario's $7-billion energy deal with South Korea's Samsung Group could jeopardize construction of Essex County's biggest wind turbine project, which has had eight years of local planning and environmental study. Brookfield Renewable Power wants to build close to 100 turbines in Lakeshore with a cost in excess of $400 million for the 200-megawatt project.
Many aspects of the sale of NB Power have both angered and confused people, but none it seems more so than the issue of access to the grid post-sale. The New Brunswick government says nothing will change, while the premiers of Nova Scotia and Newfoundland have said the sale will effectively block their access to New England and others have expressed concerns it will end the province's forays into green energy.
P.E.I.'s Conservative Opposition has asked New Brunswick to sign a deal guaranteeing access to transmission lines through the province if NB Power is sold to Hydro-Québec. The premiers of Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia made a similar request in a joint letter earlier this month, saying they're concerned their provinces will be cut off from the lucrative energy markets in the northeastern United States.
With wind generation development in Alberta forecast to create upwards of an additional 2,700 megawatts during the next 10 years, new transmission lines and substations in the southern part of the province will be needed to handle the extra capacity. Alberta's electrical grid needs more capacity to allow power generated from new wind farm projects.
Maine's attempt to create clear rules to guide multibillion-dollar energy corridor projects through the state came up short Wednesday, because of deep philosophical divisions that foreshadow debate next year in the Legislature. The impasse came during the final meeting of a 13-member study panel. The group was formed by the Legislature to recommend rules to give Maine the maximum benefit from proposed electricity, gas and petroleum corridors.
Consumers will ultimately feel a jolt on their power bills after the Stelmach government passed Wednesday its controversial Bill 50 on electricity transmission -- legislation political opponents, landowners and utility company Enmax insist Albertans will live to regret. After months of heated debate over the need for billions in new power lines--a fight that ensnared consumers, politicians and power companies -- the majority Tory government ensured easy passage in the legislature of Bill 50, the Electric Statutes Amendment Act.
Controversial legislation that will limit public debate on plans to erect billions of dollars worth of new power lines across Alberta is the latest twist in a saga that reads like a cheap detective novel. Two years ago, Alberta's energy regulator was accused of spying on opponents of the power lines during public hearings. As a result, Premier Ed Stelmach was forced to replace the head of the utilities commission. The regulator's head of security was forced to resign and the hearings were scuttled.
Even before Hydro-Quebec tentatively acquired NB Power, it turns out the Quebec government-owned utility was already taking up all the export capacity in NB Power's transmission system, leaving no room for anyone else to export electricity to New England. But New Brunswick Energy Minister Jack Keir says that doesn't prevent Nova Scotia or Newfoundland or anyone else from building a transmission line across New Brunswick.
A Canadian transmission company and an Irish wind developer said Friday they are teaming up to pursue a central Montana power project that could result in at least $1 billion worth of new wind energy in the Great Falls area. If the project succeeds, it would give Montana's burgeoning wind energy industry room to grow - an expansion that to date has been limited by a lack of lines to move power out of the state.
North America's largest utility company Hydro-Quebec has announced it will pay $4.4 billion for transmission lines of New Brunswick Power, a deal that would help the company secure greater access to electricity markets in the U.S. Hydro-Quebec announced Thursday that it expects to spend up to $23 billion over the next decade to boost its hydro electric output by 4,500 megawatts a year. Much of that will be exported to the United States and Ontario.
When the wind blows, a massive amount of power flows to the grid and "any time you get that amount of power into the auction system of the power pool, it's going to crush price," said Rob Falconer, director of distributed generation for the utility. The push to buy carbon offsets in a carbon-constrained world plays a strong role in developers' estimating profit margins, but existing uncertainty over prices makes the debate over sinking billions of dollars into extensive transmission projects even more relevant, he said.
A Canadian company is seeking wind power developers to move electricity along a pair of $3 billion transmission lines in Montana and Wyoming -- potentially spurring a major increase in renewable power exported from the Rockies to the Southwest. The two lines would move 3,000 megawatts of power from each state. That's more than three times as much wind power as Wyoming currently produces and eight times what Montana has.
Sparks flew at an information session in Calgary Thursday night on a bill that would give the Alberta government more control over new power projects. Alberta Energy officials are touring the province trying to convince environmentalists, landowners and private citizens that Alberta urgently needs more electric transmission lines.