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Island first to set price for wind

The minimum price guarantee will apply until the province meets its target of 15 per cent of electricity generated from renewable sources.

Prince Edward Island has become the first place in North America to offer a guaranteed price for electricity from wind energy.


The price is set in the Renewable Energy Act, which was proclaimed this week.

The passing of the act sets up a major expansion of wind energy production on the Island. The government has plans for a new wind farm in eastern P.E.I., and the private sector is also getting involved.

John Douglas of Ventus Energy in Toronto has three wind projects planned for P.E.I.

Douglas says the price guarantee, set at 7.75 cents a kilowatt-hour, makes investment in wind energy on P.E.I. more attractive.

Jim Lea
"It takes a lot of the uncertainty out of it," he says. "To know what the price is, and to start budgeting, conducting your feasibility analysis."

Many European countries guarantee a price for electricity from renewable sources, but Douglas says in other parts of Canada, developers have to go through a costly, time-consuming process before a project can begin.

The 7.75 cents is more than what Maritime Electric currently pays for power from the Point Lepreau nuclear plant, but lower than the 8.5 cents being paid for wind energy in Ontario.

Maritime Electric's Jim Lea thinks the... more [truncated due to possible copyright]  

Prince Edward Island has become the first place in North America to offer a guaranteed price for electricity from wind energy.


The price is set in the Renewable Energy Act, which was proclaimed this week.

The passing of the act sets up a major expansion of wind energy production on the Island. The government has plans for a new wind farm in eastern P.E.I., and the private sector is also getting involved.

John Douglas of Ventus Energy in Toronto has three wind projects planned for P.E.I.

Douglas says the price guarantee, set at 7.75 cents a kilowatt-hour, makes investment in wind energy on P.E.I. more attractive.

Jim Lea
"It takes a lot of the uncertainty out of it," he says. "To know what the price is, and to start budgeting, conducting your feasibility analysis."

Many European countries guarantee a price for electricity from renewable sources, but Douglas says in other parts of Canada, developers have to go through a costly, time-consuming process before a project can begin.

The 7.75 cents is more than what Maritime Electric currently pays for power from the Point Lepreau nuclear plant, but lower than the 8.5 cents being paid for wind energy in Ontario.

Maritime Electric's Jim Lea thinks the P.E.I. price is a fair one.
"This will probably be a little bit more expensive in the early years, but over the lifetime, probably quite competitive," says Lea.

The minimum price guarantee will apply until the province meets its target of 15 per cent of electricity generated from renewable sources.
The act also lays out regulations regarding where wind farms can be developed, with particular regard for wind speeds in possible locations.

Net metering for windmills

The act contains a bonus for small-scale developers as well, putting in place net metering for renewable energy. This will allow small-scale wind energy producers, for example a farm with a single turbine, to sell excess electricity at the same price they buy it.

One proposed section of the act did not make it through the legislature, a commitment for P.E.I. to obtain 100 per cent of its energy from renewable sources by 2015.

Jim Lea of Maritime Electric is relieved that section has been removed from the Act.

"If that's achievable – and I think it's technically a very big open question about whether it's achievable – If it were achievable, it would
only be at extraordinary cost," says Lea.

"So I think it's wise to set that aside and hold it out there as an objective, and watch the technology developments before we decide whether or not to put that in as a hard and fast goal."

Energy Minister Jamie Ballem says there was a problem with the wording of that section of the act, but that government still intends to pursue that target.

Source: http://www.cbc.ca/pei/story...

DEC 23 2005
https://www.windaction.org/posts/816-island-first-to-set-price-for-wind
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