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CANWEA 2016: Alberta targets 30% renewables by 2030

CANADA: The Alberta government will introduce legislation this afternoon enshrining its target of 30% renewable electricity by 2030 in law.

Alberta environment minister Shannon Phillips speaks to media at CANWEA 2016
Alberta environment minister Shannon Phillips speaks to media at CANWEA 2016

It will lay out a procurement process that will be launched in early 2017 with a request for proposals for 400MW of renewable energy.

Alberta environment minister Shannon Phillips made the announcement at the Canadian Wind Energy Association's (CANWEA) 2016 conference in Calgary.

The government plans to hold an auction for renewable energy credits from projects that it wants to see on line in 2019, the same year close to 1GW of coal units are scheduled to retire.

The 400MW competition is the first in a series that will bring 5GW of new renewable capacity onto the province power gird by 2030.

It will be based on price – similar to a contracts for difference system, which is linked to wholesale market price.

This has lead to expectations wind will take most, if not all, of the first contracts. It will be funded from a carbon tax on large emitters.

With about 7GW of wind in Alberta's connection queue, CANWEA president Robert Hornung expects it to be fiercely competitive, ensuring the province will get "the best possible projects at the best possible price."

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