Wind Energy ready to answer BC Hydro's call for power

BRITISH COLUMBIA - British Columbia is about to enter a new era of clean energy generation with the largest clean power call ever issued in the province, setting the stage for BC's untapped potential of wind energy to be realized. BC Hydro is asking power producers to submit proposals that collectively will add up to 5,000 gigawatt hours (GWh) of clean or renewable energy per year, enough to power 500,000 homes.

Wind energy can generate this power through the installation of 1,600 megawatts (MW) of generating capacity. With over 5,000 MW of potential generating capacity in the province, wind energy is in a perfect position to be part of the province's 'balanced energy diet'. 1,600 MW of wind energy capacity would represent close to $4-Billion in investment and would create 3,000 jobs throughout the province, placing BC amongst the leaders in wind energy generation in Canada.

"Our members have been anxiously awaiting this opportunity and are ready to respond. Despite the fact that British Columbia is only now starting construction of its first wind energy projects, the province has some of the best conditions in North America for viable wind energy facilities. Our members have participated in calls of this magnitude in other provinces which have turned to wind energy to help meet their energy needs," says Canadian Wind Energy Association President Robert Hornung. "We anticipate an overwhelming response that will represent significantly more power than BC Hydro is looking for."

Wind energy is among the fastest growing renewable energy technologies in the world, increasing by approximately 32 per cent globally over the last five years. Wind energy has proven to be a clean, abundant and renewable source of energy that is reliable and economical to produce. Currently Canada has 1,856 MW of wind energy - producing enough electricity to power 563,000 homes.

Globally, the wind energy industry now supplies 94,000 MW of electricity capacity to systems around the world.

Wind energy is clean and does not contribute to climate change, acid deposition or produce hazardous waste by-products making it a natural supplier to BC's Energy Plan, which calls for all new electricity generation projects to have zero net green house gas emissions and 90 per cent of the province's electricity to come from clean or renewable sources.

The province's abundant wind energy reserves know no geographical boundary with potential seen in the Fraser Valley, North and Central Coast, Peace River district, Vancouver Island, as well as throughout much of South Eastern British Columbia. Wind energy is an untapped resource matched with an extremely proven generation method, which can be installed quickly to meet rapidly growing energy demands.


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