Hydro Quebec has concluded a C$5 million agreement with Energie Le Nordais (ELN) for the supply and installation on Quebec's Gaspe Peninsula of three NEG-Micon 750 kW wind turbines. The project is scheduled for completion in December and was announced last month by Quebec's Energy Minister Guy Chevrette. He referred to it as a "test bench" and Quebec's first demonstration wind plant and said it will create 20 jobs during construction. ELN is the proponent of a C$150 million, 100 MW wind plant to be built on the Gaspe Peninsula in 1998 and 1999. This project was initially to have been developed by Kenetech of California until it filed for bankruptcy. ELN comprises turbine manufacturer Micon of Denmark, financier Ecowind (a subsidiary of Japan's Nichimen) of the UK, and two Quebec engineering firms, Axor and 3C Inc. Hydro Quebec's president and CEO Andre Caille, called the project an important step in developing wind energy in Quebec. "This demonstration wind plant gives Hydro Quebec an opportunity to develop wind energy expertise by working with a recognised turbine manufacturer, promote technology transfer, and help Quebec manufacturers test and showcase their products," he added. The test bench is seeking to qualify Quebec suppliers as sub-contractors to major manufacturers of wind turbines. Qualified suppliers will be able to provide components for the ELN 100 MW plant. The demonstration project responds to recommendations made by BAPE, Quebec's agency responsible for public hearings on the environment, for a demonstration wind plant to familiarise residents with the technology.
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Senior Renewable Energy Analyst (WindGEMINI Product Lead) DNV GL Bristol (City Centre), City of Bristol