EDF EN Canada Inc., a subsidiary of EDF Energies Nouvelles, and Enbridge Inc. announced today that the 300 megawatt (MW) Blackspring Ridge Wind Project declared commercial operation on May 12, 2014.
The Blackspring Ridge Project, located in Vulcan County, Alberta (50 km north of Lethbridge), started construction in May 2013 and is comprised of 166 Vestas V100-1.8 MW wind turbines. With an investment of about CAD $0.6 billion, the project represents the largest investment in wind energy in Western Canada. More than 350 jobs were created during the construction phase with 20 permanent operations and maintenance jobs.
“Together with our partner Enbridge, we proudly announce the completion of commissioning of our first joint wind project in Western Canada and the start of the delivery of clean, renewable energy to the grid,” commented Benoit Rigal, Vice President, Engineering and Construction for EDF EN Canada. “Bringing all 300 megawatts of the Blackspring Ridge project to completion safely and ahead of schedule is a result of outstanding efforts by Mortenson, Vestas, Altalink, and our team who worked hand in hand to overcome many challenges, including an aggressive delivery schedule. The entire team performed with professional diligence, always putting safety first while maintaining respect for the environment and our stakeholders.”
“With the commissioning of Blackspring Ridge, EDF EN Canada has established itself in Western Canada and bolstered its leadership position as one of the top wind project developers in the country,” said Cory Basil, Vice President, Development at EDF EN Canada. “The project demonstrates the versatility of the EDF EN team and our ability to deliver complex projects on time and on budget. We are proud to have forged new relationships with the local stakeholders and grateful to our host community for their support.”
“As Enbridge’s third Alberta-based wind facility to come online, Blackspring Ridge is a welcome addition to our growing portfolio of renewable energy assets,” said Don Thompson, Vice President, Green Power and Transmission, Enbridge Inc. “Completing a project of this magnitude requires a great deal of coordination and teamwork. Not only is this the largest wind farm in western Canada, it is one of the largest in Canada. Blackspring Ridge was built ahead of schedule thanks to the outstanding efforts of the entire team. I would also like to express our appreciation to our community partners and landowners for their continued support during the construction phase. We look forward to our future together in Vulcan County.”
Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) generated from the project are contracted to Pacific Gas and Electric under a 20-year purchase agreement. The electricity will be sold into the Alberta power pool.
The Alberta-based Climate Change and Emissions Management Corporation committed CAD $10 million in support of the project. The CCEMC provides funding for projects that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help Alberta adapt to climate change.
The project will provide substantial economic benefits to rural Alberta in the form of jobs, increased tax revenues and lease payments to landowners. In addition, the project is expected to have a positive impact on Alberta’s environment by supplying enough clean energy to serve approximately 140,000 homes.
This project will also contribute to helping Enbridge meet its Neutral Footprint commitment to generate a kilowatt of renewable energy for every additional kilowatt of conventional electricity that the company’s operations consume.