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Solar panels in the oilfields during winter

Now, THIS is Alberta Energy.

The first utility-scale solar project in Western Canada showcases all things energy on one site and proves collaboration is not only possible, but the best way forward.

Named Brooks Solar, the onsite assets include:

-          Eastern District irrigation ditch

-          Canadian Natural Resources Limited (CNRL) pump jack

-          Cenovus Energy gas well

-          ATCO energy high pressure pipelines

-          TELUS fibre optic cable

-          And, of course, the solar project; 17 MWdc, 48,500 solar panels and more than 260 kilometers  of electrical wiring on site.

The idea for the Brooks Solar project was conceived by GTE Power in 2010 - in February of 2017, Elemental Energy acquired the project. Thinking full-steam ahead, Elemental executed a long-term corporate power purchase agreement that same month.

Construction started on the project in June of 2017 and by December 2017, it was completed. With the first electrons produced at the end of 2017, the project became fully operational and is now feeding renewable energy into the Alberta grid.

The first months of 2018 are focused on final testing  of the Brooks Solar Project. With the project up and running smoothly, and on time, the hope is that it will continue to be pain-free with the remainder of the year being, “hopefully relatively boring ”, says Graeme Millen, Director of Project Investments at Elemental Energy. “We’ll be officially kickstarting the operations of the facility and sharing lessons learned about the project”.

“The successful completion of Brooks Solar represents the culmination of the tremendous efforts of our team along with the many stakeholders that have played a part in bringing this project to life. We want to thank the local community for embracing this project,” said Jamie Houssian, Principal of Elemental Energy.  “Renewable energy will play a meaningful part in the future of Alberta’s electricity supply as the province targets 30 per cent renewable energy by 2030. This project is an important step in that direction”.

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