Pembina Institute

Calgary — Renewable energy is fattening the coffers of many municipalities in southern Alberta in the form of municipal tax revenues coming in from wind and solar projects in their communities, according to new analysis by the Business Renewables Centre-Canada (BRC-Canada).

The amount of municipal tax revenue coming in from renewable energy has almost tripled to $28 million since this amount was first estimated back in 2017. BRC-Canada obtained the 2022 tax assessment value of each project and the county/municipal district mill rate in order to calculate the exact amount received by each municipality.

Some municipalities, with more or larger projects, are seeing a substantial proportion of their tax revenues coming from wind and solar projects. This includes the County of Forty Mile (50 percent), the M.D. of Pincher Creek (31 percent), the M.D. of Willow Creek (29 percent), the County of Paintearth (16 percent) and Vulcan County (15 percent).

BRC-Canada has created an infographic, available for viewing on our website and by request as a PNG, to showcase the tax revenues.

“Given these numbers, it’s unsurprising that a new Pembina Institute poll showed 75 percent of Albertans — including 66 percent of Albertans living outside of Edmonton and Calgary — would like to see more renewable energy projects where they live,” said Jorden Dye, director of BRC-Canada. “Aside from the fact that these projects are producing non-polluting, emissions-free energy, they also help plump up community coffers. This ultimately means those communities have the freedom to lower taxes, tackle badly-needed projects or provide additional services.”

Dye noted that projections show additional prosperity on the horizon for these communities.

“Based on the 2022 calculations and the projects currently in the Alberta Electric System Operator connection queue, these municipalities can expect that amount to grow by six to nine times — that’s an additional $170 million to $250 million — in just a few years.”

Jorden Dye, acting director of the Business Renewables Centre-Canada, is available for comment.

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