Extra time sought to build 63-MW Windy Point Wind Park in Alberta

Windy Point Wind Park Ltd. filed a July 29 Letter of Enquiry (LOE) with the Alberta Utilities Commission asking for a two-year extension of a deadline to build a 63-MW wind project.

In July  2012, the commission granted Windy Point approval to construct and operate the 63-MW Windy Point Wind Park project, located approximately 15 kilometers northeast of Pincher Creek. In August 2013, the commission granted Windy Point a time extension until Aug. 31, 2015, in order to complete construction of the wind farm. In November 2014, the commission granted Windy Point a time extension until Aug. 31, 2016, in order to complete construction. Windy Point now requests an extension of the construction completion date to Sept. 30, 2018.

Windy Point said it is planning to submit a Letter of Enquiry related to a turbine model change for the project. In a letter dated March 13, 2015, the commission stated it would suspend the current Boulder Run 501S substation application and combine it into a Windy Point application to change the turbine model. Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) requested an update to the environmental studies for the project. Updated environmental studies began in 2015 and continued through the first half of 2016. These study updates are now complete and final reporting is underway. Windy Point has been in regular communication with AEP regarding these studies. Once AEP signoff is granted, Windy Point said it will be in a position to proceed with the Letter of Enquiry related to a turbine model change.

On May 12, 2016, the Alberta Electric System Operator approved a revised In Service Date (ISD) of Sept. 1, 2018, for the project.

The company noted: “Historically low power pool prices over the past several years has prevented Windy Point, and many other proposed wind farm developments, from obtaining commercial project financing for the construction of the Project. In January 2016, the Government of Alberta tasked the AESO with developing and implementing a plan to procure new renewable energy. In May 2016, AESO provided its recommendations to the Government in regards to a renewable energy program (“REP”). It is expected the launch of the REP competition will commence in Q4 2016. Windy Point is expecting to participate in the REP.”

If the time extension is approved, the Windy Point schedule will change as follows:

  • Construction Start: Q4 2017
  • Commercial Operation: Q3 2018

Project contacts are: Stewart Duncan or Marc Stachiw at Alberta Wind Energy Corp., 403-266-5635.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.