SaskPower contract award confirms the value of wind energy as the province moves to reduce greenhouse gas emissions throughout the economy
October 19, 2018
Regina, Saskatchewan, October 19, 2018 – The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) commends SaskPower and the Government of Saskatchewan for the successful conclusion of that province’s first round of new competitive wind energy procurement.
SaskPower has signed a 25-year power purchase agreement with Potentia Renewables for its 200-megawatt Golden South Wind Energy Facility, located south of the Town of Assiniboia. SaskPower estimates that this project will generate enough electricity to power 90,000 homes.
As in Alberta, the Saskatchewan procurement round attracted strong industry interest, with 29 projects competing in the process with an average bid price of $42 per megawatt hour, representing both the price of the electricity and the cost of interconnecting the facility to SaskPower’s electricity infrastructure. The successful bid came in well below this average, ensuring low-cost price certainty for the long-term benefit of Saskatchewan electricity consumers. The price achieved in the new contract reflects ongoing innovation and advancement in wind energy technology, which has resulted in a two-thirds drop in the levelized cost of wind energy in less than 10 years.
The Golden South Wind Energy Facility will be in-service by 2021. Environmental planning, and project review and construction, will be guided by wind energy-specific and results-based standards put in place by the Saskatchewan government. These include siting guidelines, released in 2016, and wind-specific adaptive management guidelines released last June. These provide further assurance that wind energy developments will be located and operated with low environmental impacts.
Today’s contract announcement is a first step towards realization of the Government of Saskatchewan’s commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the electricity sector by 40 per cent from 2005 levels, by bringing wind energy to a 30 per cent share of total installed capacity by 2030. That, in turn, will be instrumental in achieving the broader provincial objective of ensuring 50 per cent of Saskatchewan’s generating capacity will be from renewables by 2030.
CanWEA looks forward to continuing to work with SaskPower and the Government of Saskatchewan on future procurements that will allow wind energy to continue to enhance its contribution to SaskPower’s greenhouse gas emission reduction objectives.
“Saskatchewan has set significant targets for wind energy growth, and wind energy is poised to make an important contribution to the success of the province’s climate change strategy. The high level of interest in this procurement shows that wind energy developers are ready to invest in the province as it reliably increases the integration of this low-cost, non-emitting energy into the supply mix. We look forward to future procurements that will allow wind energy to continue to enhance its contribution to SaskPower’s greenhouse gas emission reduction objectives.”
– Robert Hornung, President, CanWEA
“Wind energy is clearly a vital part of SaskPower’s goal of reducing GHG emissions from the electricity sector by 40 per cent by 2030. As demonstrated today, wind will support that goal by generating power at competitive prices. We look forward to the growth of wind energy in the province, and to the environmental and community benefits that will come along with that, particularly in rural communities.”
– Evan Wilson, regional director Prairies, CanWEA
- Saskatchewan currently has 221 MW of installed wind energy capacity, representing about three per cent of total generating capacity. The province committed in 2015 to move to 30 per cent of generating capacity from wind energy by 2030 – a level that would establish it as a Canadian wind energy leader. To learn more, please visit the Wind Markets section of CanWEA’s website.
- In September 2018, SaskPower announced that it had approved a 177 MW wind energy project for the province’s southwest. In addition to this project, SaskPower will need to add approximately 1,700 MW of new wind energy to its grid over the next 12 years to meet its ambitious targets.
- In combination with expansion of other renewable sources – and the broader objective of having 50 per cent renewable generating capacity by 2030 – growth in wind energy will contribute to a 40 per cent reduction in power-sector GHG emissions in Saskatchewan from 2005 levels within that same timeframe.
- A 2016 technical study prepared by GE Energy Consulting with the input of SaskPower and other grid operators in Canada found Saskatchewan’s electricity system could handle twice as much wind energy as it is targeting without compromising grid reliability.
About the Canadian Wind Energy Association
CanWEA is the voice of Canada’s wind energy industry, actively promoting the responsible and sustainable growth of wind energy. A national non-profit association, CanWEA serves as Canada’s leading source of credible information about wind energy and its social, economic and environmental benefits. Join us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn. Learn more at www.canwea.ca.
For more information or for interview opportunities, please contact:
Ameera Shivji, Public Affairs Advisor, Prairies
Canadian Wind Energy Association