Canada - Province calls for new projects to advance manitoba's wind development strategy

Building on St. Leon's Success Benefits Everyone: Rondeau

Manitoba moved forward its 1,000-megawatt wind-power strategy today as Manitoba Hydro publicly released a request for proposals (RFP) for new wind projects totalling up to 300 megawatts of wind or enough to power 100,000 homes. The deadline for submission of proposals is July 17, 2007. “This RFP shows our commitment to developing wind power not only as a made-in-Manitoba clean, renewable-energy source, but also for its economic opportunities for our rural communities, First Nations, construction firms and advanced manufacturing suppliers, and its exciting employment opportunities for our young people,” said Science, Technology, Energy and Mines Minister Jim Rondeau. “We want to build on the success in St. Leon that will ultimately benefit the entire province.”

“We are pleased to be taking this next step in encouraging wind development in Manitoba and integrating another resource into our renewable energy portfolio,” said Bob Brennan, president and CEO of Manitoba Hydro. Manitoba’s 1,000-megawatt wind strategy is expected to generate $2 billion in investment, $100 million in wind-rights payments to landowners and $150 million in property taxes to local municipalities. In addition to the request for 300 megawatts released today, three further allocations of 200 megawatts each are currently targeted for 2013-14, 2015-16 and 2017-18, based on economic viability. “Like hydroelectricity, wind energy is renewable and helps to preserve the environment for future generations as well as diversifying our power supply and providing substantial economic benefits around the province,” said Finance Minister Greg Selinger, minister responsible for Manitoba Hydro.

Rondeau noted that there have been several key developments in Manitoba’s wind strategy over the last several years including:

- in 2003, beginning work on the first industrial wind farm in Manitoba history in St Leon;
- in 2006, completing the 99-megawatt, $210-million St. Leon project, resulting in $100 million in operational expenditures, $30 million in provincial and municipal taxes and $9 million in local landholder payments over the life of the project;
- in 2006, receiving over 40 expressions of interest in Manitoba wind development from First Nations, communities, turbine manufacturers, wind developers and consultants;
- making available wind monitoring data collected throughout the province in past years by Manitoba Hydro;
- launching the first urban wind-test site at The Forks to assess the viability of having a wind turbine at one of Winnipeg’s major tourism attractions; and
- last fall, hosting the largest national Canadian Wind Energy Association conference in the organization’s history.

“Currently, the 63 wind turbines around St. Leon have quickly become a Manitoba tourism hotspot, attracting bus loads of visitors eager to see the giant towers that boast blades longer than the wingspan of a 747 aircraft,” said Rondeau. “An interpretive centre being developed in the area will add to the public education component of learning about one of the fastest-growing renewable energy sources.”

Manitoba’s wind strategy builds on the province’s commitment to developing renewable energy sources including new-generation hydro, geothermal, ethanol, biodiesel and hydrogen. Manitoba Hydro, in partnership with the Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation, is currently constructing the 200 megawatt Wuskwatim project, a low-impact hydro generating station scheduled to be completed by 2012.

Those interested in receiving a copy of the Manitoba Hydro request for proposals are asked to contact Glenn Schneider at Manitoba Hydro at 204-474-3535. Information is also available at:

More information on Manitoba wind energy is available at:
Manitoba Hydro
Edited by Trevor Sievert, Online Editorial Journalist
wind energy, renewable energy, jobs, wind turbine, wind power, wind farm, rotorblade, onshore, offshore

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