Data gathered from the turbines will be used to determine the development potential for full-scale wind farms, says RESL boss Larry LeBlanc. "RESL has been collecting data for four years which enables us to move forward confidently with our exploration phase, he says. "Nova Scotia has a need to develop alternative energy resources to compliment our existing forms of energy. Our current data shows enormous potential for this renewable resource."
Much of the work RESL is doing in its exploration phase will qualify under the Canadian Conservation and Renewable Expenses (CRCE) program, a tax law that allows wind developers to claim certain pre-development expenses, including the installation of test wind turbines, and flow them through to shareholders who can use them as deductions on their income tax.
The company, which failed to reach agreement on a power purchase agreement last year after winning Nova Scotia Power's request for proposals for 100 GWh/year of wind, has met with the monopoly utility and agreed on the "general terms of power sales" from the exploration turbines, which are expected to produce 48 GWh a year, says MacDonald. RESL would not disclose any details.
Nova Scotia Power's chief operating officer, Ralph Tedesco, has weighed in publicly on RESL's plan. "The project is a significant one, both in terms of dollars committed and the amount of renewable energy it aims to bring onto the provincial grid. Our company is supportive of this project and its goals," he says.