The Wintering Hills wind power project has jumped another hurdle, as Suncor Energy has won regulatory approval to build its planned 88-megawatt turbine near Drumheller.
Suncor Energy Products said Monday the Alberta Utilities Commission had approved the installation of up to 55 turbines on 6,475 hectares of private land 21 kilometres southeast of Drumheller.
“This is an important milestone," said Suncor spokesperson, Sneh Seetal.
“It brings us one step closer to Suncor’s largest wind power project to date.”
In peak operation, the project can be expected to generate enough clean electricity to power approximately 35,000 Alberta homes.
This output is the equivalent of 200,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year.
The project is expected to be completed towards the end 2011.
Construction will begin this summer.
“Wind farms are able to be constructed in fairly short order,” Seetal said of the rate of development.
Suncor said they had conducted “extensive” public consultation, using letters to land owners, open houses, public meetings with Wheatland County, ads in local papers, and consultation with 27 land owners within a 2 kilometre radius of the proposed site.
Suncor Energy products currently has joint ownership of four wind farms already in operation, with a combined generating capacity of 147 megawatts.