AWA?s Wind Energy Projects Rank High on Canadian Priority List

Two wind power projects owned by the American Wind Alliance (AWA), with a total 265 megawatts (MW) of installed capacity, have received priority ranking for transmission along the Lake Huron shoreline in the Ontario Power Authority’s (OPA) Feed-In Tariff (FIT) program.

Twenty Two Degree Wind Energy, a 150-MW wind farm located south of Goderich, and Arran Wind Energy, a 115-MW wind turbines located east of Port Elgin, are ranked among the top 700 MW of renewable energy in first-round FIT applications from the shoreline that were held awaiting approval of the Bruce to Milton transmission line. Construction on the line is now under way.

“This brings us one step closer to receiving 20-year power purchase agreements,” said T. Boone Pickens, the legendary energy executive who started Mesa Power Group LLC. AWA was founded by Mesa Power Group. “AWA is committed to helping enhance North American national energy security and this renewables initiative is a key part of that effort.”

“The Green Energy Act, and the associated Feed-In Tariff program, has made Ontario one of the most attractive markets for wind energy in North America,” said Robert Hornung, President of the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA). “With a strong, consistent GEA in place, we are confident that the wind industry will deliver the jobs, investment and clean energy that Ontarians expect.”

The projects are ahead of many others in the FIT program because of their shovel readiness. They were favored because of their financial depth, relevant experience and available turbine supply.

On December 21, the OPA posted the priority ranking for 242 first-round FIT projects – applications submitted between Oct. 1, 2009 and Nov. 30, 2009 – that are without contracts. All wind projects in the western region of Ontario are now being considered for ranking because 1,200 MW of additional capacity that will be made available by the Bruce to Milton transmission line will be allocated during the next step, which is the Economic Connection Test (ECT). The ECT considers the cost to connect the projects based on ongoing transmission development and all other proposed generating facilities. The ECT will begin next month and it is expected contracts will be awarded at the end of that process.

Two other projects owned by AWA, the 200-MW North Bruce Wind Energy project east of Port Elgin and the 100-MW Summerhill Wind Energy project north of Clinton, along with other projects for which applications were submitted between Dec. 1, 2009 and June 4, 2010, are among the second-round applications that are currently being assessed by the OPA.

AWA’s four projects are being developed by Kincardine-based Leader Resources Services Corp.

The objective of this endeavor is to drive continued growth in the wind industry by acquiring and then completing the development of wind projects in North America. During the past several months, Mesa Power Group and the American Wind Alliance have successfully acquired more than 600 megawatts of high-quality wind projects and continue to consider new wind projects for acquisition that meet its selection criteria.