Quebec First Nations group leads plans for 250MW

CANADA: Chinese turbine manufacturer Guodian United Power Technology Corporation Limited is looking to enter the Quebec market through a partnership with one of the province's First Nations groups.

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The Innu Takuaikan Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam (ITUM) says it is partnering with China’s United Power, Toronto-based developer Northland Power and Quebec-based construction firm Transelec Common in the development, installation and operation of 250MW of wind projects in the province.

"We view these projects as a very important development tool for our community," said chief Georges-Ernest Grégoire. "We are constantly seeking ways of diversifying our economy, and we believe that the members of the community will draw maximum benefit from these sustainable development projects.

Quebec recently announced a plan to buy 250MW of wind from projects with First Nations involvement.

United Power said it is also developing a wind project with the Cree community of Whapmagoostui on the shore of Hudson Bay in northern Quebec. To enter the market, however, the Chinese turbine maker will have to meet local content restrictions requiring at least 60% of project costs to be spent in Quebec, with half of that spending to take place in the Gaspé and Matane regions where most of the province’s manufacturing base is located.

There will be additional opportunities for turbine sales in Quebec beyond the First Nations request for proposals. The province has also announced a request for proposals for 450MW that is open to all wind energy developers, including the installation of 300MW of wind energy capacity in a longer term plan to develop its sparsely populated northern region.

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