ATCO Power asks for five-year delay for 400-MW Heartland project in Alberta

ATCO Power Canada Ltd. filed an Oct. 24 application at the Alberta Utilities Commission for a delay in the construction completion deadline, from the prior August 2017 to a new target in December 2022, for the 400-MW ATCO Heartland Generating Station project.

“Current economic and eletricity market conditions have altered the ATCO Heartland Generating Station construction schedule and the project’s timing has been modified to reflect a later start date,” said the company. It said site preparation and construction are now due to begin in December 2018, with commercial operation expected in December 2022. The prior start of construction estimate had been November 2014, with commercial operation in August 2017.

ATCO Power also asked that a company involved in the project’s approval, 2615991 Canada Ltd., be removed since that company has been dissolved. No changes for the project itself are being proposed.

ATCO Power said it is pursuing clearances for the project delay from other Alberta agencies involved in project permitting.

Posted to the project website was this Oct. 7 update by the company for local landowners and other interested parties: “In 2013, ATCO Power proposed to build and operate a 400 megawatt (MW) natural gas-fired power station called the ATCO Heartland Generating Station, located in Strathcona County, approximately 14 kilometres northeast of Fort Saskatchewan on ATCO-owned private land (NW quarter of Section 27, Township 55, Range 21, west of the Fourth Meridian).

“In August 2015, ATCO Power proposed to add a second 400 MW generating unit (Phase 2) to the power station. However, given the current electricity demand and market conditions, ATCO Power has decided not to proceed with the second proposed generating unit at this time.

“Additionally, ATCO Power has rescheduled the start of construction for the first generating unit to the end of 2018, with full commercial operation scheduled to begin in 2022. The first generating unit has been approved by the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) and Alberta Environment and Parks, and ATCO Power is applying to the regulators to update the existing approvals to reflect the new project timeline.”

The Alberta Utilities Commission in September 2014 approved a December 2013 application from 2615991 Canada Ltd., which was at the time an affiliate of ATCO Power, for the construction and operation of the 400-MW Heartland plant. The project is to include one nominal 274-MW combustion turbine generator set consisting of a Siemens SGT6-8000H class gas turbine coupled with a Siemens SGen6-2000H electric generator, and it will operate in a combined cycle mode.

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.