"We’re excited about the opportunity to grow our current renewables portfolio," said Jim Provias, vice president, Renewable Energy. "Wintering Hills will be Suncor’s biggest wind power project to date and another example of Suncor’s ongoing commitment to increasing renewable energy options in Canada."
"Teck is committed to the efficient use of energy and responsible management of associated greenhouse gas emissions to create a more sustainable future," said John Thompson, vice president, Technology and Development at Teck. "We look forward to working with Suncor, a Canadian pioneer in wind power."
The planned 88 MW Wintering Hills Wind Power Project – which received regulatory approval from the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) on June 7, 2010 – will consist of 55 General Electric 1.6 MW wind turbines located on privately-owned land approximately 21 km south east of Drumheller, Alberta.
"Suncor Energy’s announcement shows that Alberta continues to move in the right direction as we work to increase the role of renewable resources in our energy mix." said Alberta Energy Minister, Ron Liepert. "We are committed to advancing clean energy production. The Wintering Hills project will help us achieve this goal while contributing to Alberta’s efforts to tap into a more diverse selection of energy sources in the future."
"Wind energy is a rapidly growing business around the world and one of the key opportunities that Alberta has to clean up its electricity system," said Marlo Raynolds, executive director of the Pembina Institute. "Alberta needs continued investments in good wind projects if it wants to become a serious player in clean energy. We applaud Suncor for making this investment in spite of uncertain economic times."
Construction on the project began in July and is expected to be complete by the end of 2011. At peak operation, Wintering Hills is expected to generate enough clean electricity to power approximately 35,000 Alberta homes, displacing the equivalent of approximately 200,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.
Suncor Energy is Canada’s premier integrated energy company. Suncor’s operations include oil sands development and upgrading, conventional and offshore oil and gas production, petroleum refining, and product marketing under the Petro-Canada brand.
While working to responsibly develop petroleum resources, Suncor is also developing a growing renewable energy portfolio. The company’s renewable energy interests include four operational wind power projects totaling a generating capacity of 147 megawatts and Canada’s largest ethanol plant by production volume with a current production capacity of 200 million litres per year. Suncor’s common shares (symbol: SU) are listed on the Toronto and New York stock exchanges.