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Company unveils $1.5B wind power plan

Westman Wind Power Co. plans to spend $1.5 billion to develop eight wind farms in Manitoba, the company announced Wednesday.

The projects will have an initial capacity of about 700 megawatts and a potential maximum capacity of more than 1,400 MW – enough energy to power hundreds of thousands of homes.

"Wind is the fastest growing source of power generation in the world and we think Manitoba can be a world leader in the development of wind power," said Westman partner Paul Edwards, a lawyer and businessman in Winnipeg.

The company said it is receiving technical support for the projects from Manitoba-based Wardrop Engineering and wind-power developers Gale Force Energy of Toronto and Padoma Wind Power of La Jolla, Calif.

First wind farm to be in use by 2008

Westman said five of the projects will be located on private land, where it has already negotiated land use agreements with the owners of more than 20,000 hectares.

It has also filed applications to build two projects on 8,000 hectares of Crown land and said negotiations are continuing for the final project, which is planned for the Churchill area.

A spokesman for Westman says he's waiting for the province to develop policy for wind farm developers and how that land can be utilized.

If the project receives all the approvals required, windmills at the first site are... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  
The projects will have an initial capacity of about 700 megawatts and a potential maximum capacity of more than 1,400 MW – enough energy to power hundreds of thousands of homes.

"Wind is the fastest growing source of power generation in the world and we think Manitoba can be a world leader in the development of wind power," said Westman partner Paul Edwards, a lawyer and businessman in Winnipeg.

The company said it is receiving technical support for the projects from Manitoba-based Wardrop Engineering and wind-power developers Gale Force Energy of Toronto and Padoma Wind Power of La Jolla, Calif.

First wind farm to be in use by 2008

Westman said five of the projects will be located on private land, where it has already negotiated land use agreements with the owners of more than 20,000 hectares.

It has also filed applications to build two projects on 8,000 hectares of Crown land and said negotiations are continuing for the final project, which is planned for the Churchill area.

A spokesman for Westman says he's waiting for the province to develop policy for wind farm developers and how that land can be utilized.

If the project receives all the approvals required, windmills at the first site are expected to be up and running by 2008, with all farms to be operational by three years later.

Plans catch First Nation off guard

However, at least one First Nation is less than overjoyed at the news that a wind farm could be built nearby.

Grand Rapids Chief Ovide Mercredi says he first heard about the proposed project Wednesday, and he believes he should have been consulted earlier by the province and by Westman.

Mercredi says if Westman Wind Power wants to talk, his band is open to discussions.

"It could be an economic opportunity – we would look at it in that context – but they shouldn't assume that they can deal only with the province. They should come to us and develop a partnership if they're interested in that," Mercredi said.

Westman said site selection was based historical weather data and computer-based modelling carried out by wind energy consultant Helimax Energy. It said testing will be carried out during the next 18 months to measure winds on the sites.

Westman, a privately held firm based in Winnipeg, said financing is being arranged through CFI Group, which is partially owned by the Great-West Lifeco subsidiary Canada Life.

CFI said it has obtained significant funding commitments from investors in its equity fund, including the Manitoba Teachers' Retirement Allowances Fund and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan.


 
 


Source: http://www.cbc.ca/manitoba/...

MAR 8 2006
https://www.windaction.org/posts/1595-company-unveils-1-5b-wind-power-plan
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