Ottawa announces $9.2M for Alberta wind energy project

EDMONTON, ALBERTA - The Honourable Gary Lunn, Minister of Natural Resources, has announced that the Chin Chute Wind Power Project will receive up to $9.2 million in funding, over ten years, under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power initiative. Minister Lunn made the announcement at the Rural Matters National Symposium in Edmonton.

"Wind power is a key part of our government's strategy to find a balance between energy production and the protection of our health and the environment," said Minister Lunn. "Funding for the Chin Chute Wind Power Project sends a clear signal that our government is committed to increasing the supply of clean, renewable energy for Canadians while helping Canada's wind power industry grow."

The Chin Chute Wind Power Project, located approximately 20 kilometres southwest of Taber, Alberta, qualified for the one cent per kilowatt-hour incentive under the ecoENERGY for Renewable Power initiative. The wind farm's 20 turbines are capable of generating up to 30 megawatts of clean, renewable power, enough to power nearly 11,000 homes.

The Chin Chute Wind Power Project is owned by Suncor Energy Products Inc., Enbridge Income Fund and Acciona Wind Energy Canada Inc. Acciona operates the facility, which opened in 2006 at a cost of approximately $60 million.

"Canada's wind energy industry is quickly maturing but still has an opportunity to become robustly competitive with conventional energy options," said Daniel E. Dubois, Vice-president of Development, Acciona Wind Energy Canada. "Government support is critical to attracting investment required to develop renewable energy options and build a self-sustaining industry in Canada."

"Wind power is an important component of a broader vision of a sustainable energy future - one that involves government, industry and consumers each playing a role by producing and using energy responsibly," said Charles Szmurlo, Vice-President Alternative and Emerging Technologies, Enbridge, Inc. "At Enbridge, we're committed to a transition to a more sustainable energy future through projects like the Chin Chute Wind Power Project."

"There has been substantial investment in wind power from private-sector companies such as Suncor, which are helping to make it a viable and growing industry in Canada," said Jim Provias, Vice President, Renewable Energy and Business Development for Suncor Energy.

"However, programs such as the ecoEnergy Renewable Power initiative are very important as a way to bridge the price gap between wind power and more traditional forms of energy production. These programs will help stimulate further private investment and further development of the wind industry."

Businesses, municipalities, institutions and organizations are eligible to apply for funding under ecoENERGY for Renewable Power. The initiative provides about $1.48 billion to increase Canada's supply of clean electricity from renewable sources such as wind, biomass, low-impact hydro, geothermal, solar photovoltaic and ocean energy. It will encourage the production of up to 4,000 megawatts of new electricity from renewable energy sources - enough electricity to power about one million homes.



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