Imperial Oil gets interim extension to complete 43-MW cogen in Alberta

Imperial Oil Ltd. on Dec. 21 won an interim approval from the Alberta Utilities Commission on its Nov. 28 request for a time extension in order to complete construction of a 43-MW cogeneration plant at the Imperial Strathcona refinery in Strathcona County, east of the city of Edmonton.

The commission in approving the project had established Dec. 31, 2016, as the deadline to complete the project. Said the Dec. 21 order about the time crunch under that current deadline: “As there has not been sufficient time to undertake a process to consider the above-mentioned application, the Commission by way of this letter grants an interim extension of Approval 3194-D02-2015 until March 31, 2017, under Subsection 8(5) of the Alberta Utilities Commission Act.”

Imperial Oil asked for a three-year delay in the construction completion deadline, to Dec. 31, 2019. Imperial said it now anticipates making a decision to fund the construction of the cogeneration project in 2017, with startup of the power plant anticipated to take place prior to Dec. 31, 2019.

Said the delay request: “An extension of the construction completion deadline is required to allow Imperial to reactivate the Strathcona Refinery Cogeneration Project which was suspended in 2015 as a result of the economic situation at the time, namely lower crude oil prices and the effect on company cash flow. As well, Imperial required additional time to conduct an assessment of potential impacts and the viable configuration of cogeneration for the Strathcona refinery following the Alberta Government’s ongoing release of important policy details and implementation process for the new Climate Leadership Plan regulations. Imperial remains committed to an efficient and effective full phase development of the Strathcona Cogeneration project and is proceeding with the reactivation of the Cogeneration Project within the terms and conditions of the existing approval.”

The application said the cogen project will include installation of a new 43 MW (ISO) General Electric Frame 6B gas turbine generator and electrical facilities. In conjunction with the cogen, there will be a fuel gas-fired heat recovery steam generator constructed which will produce the steam to meet about 50% of the refinery needs.

A company contact is: Larry Krushelnitzky, Strathcona Cogeneration Project Executive, phone 780.449.8261, larry.l.krushelnitzky@esso.ca.

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.