Alberta legislates 30% by 2030 renewables target, releases details on competitive procurement

Content from a CanSIA industry newsletter dated Thursday, November 03rd 2016.

The Government of Alberta announced that it will legislate its target to meet 30% of the province’s annual electricity needs from renewable resources.

“Decarbonizing and diversifying Alberta’s electricity supply to 30 per cent renewables by 2030 is not only the right thing to do, it is also the sensible thing to do,” said John Gorman, CanSIA President & CEO. “Renewable energy has never been cheaper.”

In support of meeting this target, the province will commence a process this month to procure the first 400 MW of the 5,000 MW of new utility-scale renewable electricity generation capacity that will be supported through the Renewable Electricity Program (REP).

The REP will be a competitive procurement that will employ a mechanism called an “indexed-Renewable Energy Certificate (REC)” which is similar to the “Contract for Differences” approach used in other jurisdictions but amended to be compatible with the unique characteristics of Alberta’s electricity sector and market.

“The technology and expertise for reliable system integration has never been more readily available,” John Gorman continued. “The need to balance environment and economic development while demonstrating a responsible approach to the development of our abundance of natural resources has never been more front of mind for Canadians. Legislating this target proves that 30 per cent by 2030 is not just a goal that may be achieved, it is a goal that Alberta will achieve.”

The first round of the REP will be technology-neutral. The bids submitted and results will inform the design of future rounds with potential for “carve-outs” or “set-asides” or other design elements to be included in future.

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