As one of its first actions under the Climate Leadership Plan, the Government of Alberta has chosen the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) to develop and implement a renewable electricity incentive program to add additional renewable generation capacity into Alberta’s electricity system.
“We are pleased to help support the government’s Climate Leadership Plan by developing and implementing an incentive program to bring more renewables onto the grid and to do so in a low-cost manner,” says Mike Law, vice president of renewables development and sustainability. “We appreciate the government’s commitment to integrating new sources of renewable power into the Alberta electric system without compromising reliability.”
The AESO developed and implemented Canada’s first competitive process for transmission infrastructure: the Fort McMurray West 500 kV transmission project.
“The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) is pleased that the Alberta Government is moving quickly to act on its new renewable energy objectives by making a commitment to launch a competitive process to procure new renewable energy before the end of 2016 with a view to having projects in operation by 2019,” CanWEA said in a statement. “CanWEA will be an active participant in consultation processes now being initiated by the Alberta Electric System Operator to inform the design and implementation of the procurement process.”
The first competition for new renewable electricity projects is expected later this year, following approval from the Government of Alberta. The government has requested that the AESO provide its recommendations on program design by this May. Stakeholder engagement will commence immediately, and developers, investors and other interested parties are encouraged to visit aeso.ca/rep for further information and to complete the online questionnaire.
Over the last five years, the AESO has made investments in transmission infrastructure to support the integration of additional generation – including renewables – and move power from where it is produced to where it is needed. During that same time frame, Alberta’s renewables portfolio increased by 45%, from 1,927 MW in 2010 to 2,785 MW today.