EDMONTON — Several different firms are partnering with First Nations across the province on five different renewable energy projects collectively worth approximately $1.2 billion.
Alberta-based TransAlta Corporation will build the 2017-megawatt Windrise project southwest of Fort MacLeod, and Ontario-based Potentia Renewables Inc. will build the 113-megawatt Stirling Wind project near Lethbridge in partnership with the Paul First Nation. The company will also build two phases of the 193-megawatt Jenner Wind Project near Brooks.
Capstone Infrastructure Corporation will also build near Brooks when it partners with the Sawridge First Nation to build the 48-megawatt Buffalo Atlee wind farm, and EDF Renewables Canada Inc. will partner with the Kainai First Nation to build the 202-megawatt Cypress Wind Power project near Medicine Hat.
The three wind projects engaging in private-sector partnerships with First Nations will contain a 25 per cent Indigenous equity component and may include skills training and educational opportunities. The five projects will also bring in $175 million in rural benefits over the life of the projects including municipal revenues and landowner payments.
“This program is an important entry point into Alberta’s renewable energy sector, providing much-needed revenue streams and employment opportunities for First Nations while generating economic and environmental benefits for the province as a whole,” said First Nations Power Authority CEO Guy Lonechild in a statement.
“First Nations Power Authority is pleased to have been part of the discussions that formed the foundation for where we are today, and we believe the knowledge gained will lead to even greater success for First Nations in the future.”
In total the projects will generate 760 megawatts of renewable electricity, enough to power 300,000 homes, and, as estimated by the Alberta government, will create approximately 1,000 jobs.