Wind power’s prevailing direction in Canada? Big and foreign-owned

DSC03744Richard Blackwell, The Globe and Mail
The vast majority of Canadian wind power production is now controlled by a handful of large companies, many of them foreign owned, replacing community groups that were initially seen as the backbone of alternative energy production. The takeover of the business by large companies is one reason behind the backlash against the rapid installation of huge, looming turbines, particularly if they are near recreational property or agricultural communities. An analysis by The Globe and Mail shows that more than 90 per cent of the current 6,500 megawatts of wind power capacity in Canada is in the hands of large companies, and about 25 per cent is held by foreign interests.

The biggest Canadian players are large firms and utilities that also operate in other energy businesses – power utility TransAlta Corp., pipeline operators Enbridge Inc. and TransCanada Corp., oil sands developer Suncor Energy Inc. and energy conglomerate Brookfield Renewable Energy Partners LP, for example.

Indeed, Enbridge and EDF EN Canada Inc., a subsidiary of French power giant Électricité de France – already partners on big wind farms in Quebec – on Monday announced that together they have paid $600-million to purchase a huge 300 MW wind project north of Lethbridge, Alta. The Blackspring Ridge wind farm, taken through the development phase by Calgary based Greengate Power Corp., will see construction begin later this year. Read article

6 thoughts on “Wind power’s prevailing direction in Canada? Big and foreign-owned

  1. Are they trying to suggest that foreign ownership is a significant factor in our objection to wind turbines? It’s hardly a factor at all. They could be 100% Canadian and they’d still be worthless pieces of garbage that have nothing to do with ‘green’ or ‘renewable’ and which are costing billions and making us sick. Foreign ownership is just salt in the wound.

  2. I still don’t like the fact that they just all keep saying if we all had a hand in the money jar we’d all be happy about them coming and would resist…..come on, speaking for myself I don’t want ANY part of a wind project for nothing!

    They’re getting us mixed up with the Government people not ones with brains!

  3. Many of the people in our communities had the opportunity to become turbine farmers, but they were smart enough to do their homework first, and not take the word of the windweasels, who stand to make disgustingly huge profits for this scam. They turned down $50,000.00 per turbine, and some of the farmers have enough acreage, that they could have had several of them. They refused, because the love their farm, and their families, their communities, and they don’t want to ruin all that for easy money. Easy money always has a catch, and it’s never a good one!

  4. Community based renewable energy projects would also be owned by local/community shareholders.
    A big company could persuade the shareholders to sell to them and perhaps offer them royalities along with the deal.
    This way the community shareholders get rid of expenses like repairs, insurance, etc. while still getting money out of these projects in the form of dividends, shared revenue and/or royalities.
    This is why this won’t work and the big companies also like this as they know they can end up owning these community based renewable energy projects.

    • Even if a town owns renewable energy projects they could sell out and get rid of all the problems associated with running renewable projects and still get money out of these projects.

  5. That A.H. McGinty will slither into obscurity, with his pockets lined, and leave the people of Ontario with the financial burden of wind power and GEA ( Green Energy Act ) for many years to come.
    Rural residents of Ontario pay comparably the highest electrical costs and fees in the western world.
    Good show McGinty

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