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Don’t block our mountains or mess with good farmland: Alberta releases renewable power rules – Pipeline Online

Feb 29, 2024

EDMONTON – Last August, Alberta Premier Danielle Smith shocked the renewable energy industry by imposing a seven-month pause on final approvals for new major renewable energy projects. That pause, so the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) could conduct an inquiry and issue a report, comes to an end on Feb. 29. On Feb. 28, Smith rolled out her government’s new regulations going forward, regulations that place restrictions on siting, and impose a reclamation scheme, among other things.

The announcement was made a day after Alberta’s 45 wind farms spread across the southern part of the province produced next to zero power for 12 hours. For over 40 minutes, the 1,519 wind turbines in Alberta were producing net zero power whatsoever. For those 12 hours, the 4,481 megawatts of installed wind power were generating under 10 megawatts.

“We instituted the pause for one simple reason: We needed an affordable and reliable grid. The emergency alert we had during that bitterly cold weekend in January showed us the importance of such at the same time we needed to place Albertans,” said Smith in a press conference from Edmonton.

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