CALGARY, ALTA.—New legislation in Alberta aims to modernize the province’s power system.
Officials announced the Electricity Statutes Amendment Act would help further modernize Alberta’s electricity system. If passed, the act will encourage adoption and investment in emerging energy systems and technologies that can lead to long-term benefits for ratepayers and the electricity industry.
“As new and improved technologies emerge, we need to ensure that Albertans can benefit from these developments to remain a top destination for global investment,” said Dale Nally, associate minister of natural gas and electricity, in a press release. “The amendments proposed will encourage increased investment and the adoption of these new technologies while making sure that Alberta’s electricity system continues to be safe, reliable and affordable, meeting the needs of consumers and investors.”
The act was crafted following months of engagement and targeted discussions with investors, consumer groups and electricity producers and utilities, said the province.
The legislative amendments proposed under the act allow the integration of energy storage into Alberta’s interconnected electricity system in both the competitive electricity market and the transmission and distribution system.
The proposed amendments would allow unlimited self-supply with export while ensuring that transmission system costs are balanced among all system participants.
To ensure costs associated with these technologies are shared reasonably and fairly between industry and Alberta ratepayers, and to encourage maximum use of the existing system, the proposed amendments call for oversight and co-ordination of the implementation of these technologies into Alberta’s electricity system.
The province noted the changes are not expected to impact consumers’ utility costs immediately, but will lead to savings that will benefit consumers in the long run.
The act would also grant the minister of energy regulation-making authority to allow government to provide further guidance around a distribution planning framework.