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Canadian Energy Perspectives

Record Low Prices: Alberta Releases Results of Round 1 of the Renewable Electricity Program

Posted in Alberta Electric System Operator, Energy – Renewable, Alternative and Clean
Alberta
Kimberly J. Howard

On December 13, 2017, the Government of Alberta announced the results of Round 1 of the Renewable Energy Program (REP).  The successful bids set a record for the lowest renewable electricity pricing in Canada, ranging from $30.90 to $43.30 per MWh with a weighted average price for the successful bids of $37 per MWh or 3.7 cents per kWh.

Summary of Results

REP Round 1 delivered more than the anticipated 400 MW with almost 600 MW of wind generation from the following four projects:

  1. EDP Renewables Canada Ltd. – Sharp Hills Wind Farm (248.4 MW) in Oyen, Alberta
  2. Enel Green Power Canada, Inc. – Phase 2 (30.6 MW) of Castle Rock Ridge Wind Power Plant in Pincher Creek, Alberta
  3. Enel Green Power Canada, Inc. – Riverview Wind Farm (115 MW) in Pincher Creek, Alberta
  4. Capital Power Corporation – Whitla Wind (201.6 MW) in Medicine Hat, Alberta

While the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) has not yet released the final form of the Renewable Electricity Support Agreement (RESA), it did release the Fairness Advisor’s Report for REP Round 1, a copy of which can be found here.

Qualified Proponents

Twelve proponents submitted bid prices for 26 projects in the RFP stage of REP Round 1. The proponent names are listed alphabetically below:

    • BHEC – RES Alberta L.P.
    • BowArk Energy Ltd.
    • C&B Alberta Solar Development ULC
    • Capital Power Corporation
    • EDF EN Canada Inc.
    • EDP Renewables Canada Ltd.
    • Enel Green Power Canada Inc.
    • Invenergy Wind Global LLC
    • NaturEner Energy Canada Inc.
    • NextEra Canada Development LP
    • Potentia Renewables Inc.
    • TransAlta Corporation

    REP Round 2?

    To date, no concrete plans regarding the timing of REP Round 2 have been announced. More details are expected in early 2018.  With stunningly low prices, we anticipate that the Government of Alberta may seek to launch Round 2 as soon as possible to continue progressing toward meeting its target of 30% renewable electricity by 2030 (30 by 30 target).  Whether such low prices can be sustained or replicated in future rounds will depend upon the evaluation factors and project criteria (e.g. geographic, Indigenous participation or municipal involvement) identified in each round by the Government of Alberta.  Each of the REP Round 1 projects can be connected to the existing transmission system with no new transmission costs or upgrade requirements; however, Alberta’s 30 by 30 target cannot be achieved solely through such selection criteria.  As a result, Albertans would be prudent not to treat these very low prices as the market benchmark.