RE: Announcement from Provincial Government
On Behalf of PACE:
In response to last Thursday’s news announcement by the Government of Alberta (GoA) instructing the AUC to hold a seven-month moratorium on renewable energy projects permitting process through the Alberta Utilities Commission, PACE Canada would like its stakeholders in communities across central and southern Alberta to know that we are committed to following through with our proposed solar farm developments.
Although this decision may create some delay, we are confident that our projects have been developed responsibly, and sustainably. PACE has worked with landowners and communities to develop projects that meet the requirements of the Alberta Utilities Commission and Alberta Environment and Protected Areas regulatory process for renewable energy projects.
The two key issues driving this decision are related to decommissioning and concerns over land use. We would like to point out that PACE was at the forefront of developing a responsible decommissioning plan where we mapped out a detailed account on how the cost of decommissioning will be funded at the end of the solar farms life at year 9 and where funds are accessible to landowners should the company become insolvent.
In terms of land use, PACE is a pioneer of the Agrivoltaics movement in Canada. All of our projects are designed to allow for some agrivoltaic activities from sheep grazing to row cropping and hay production.
PACE believes the co-location of food production and energy generation is true synergy that addresses three of Canada’s most pressing resource needs: our growing need for food, energy and water. The synergistic relationship of the food, energy and water nexus offers Albertans a sustainable approach to meet its needs while offering support to Alberta’s struggling rural communities. Moreover, our projects will enable both agriculture producers and rural communities to achieve net zero objectives.
PACE would like to encourage the Government of Alberta and the Alberta Utilities Commission to put innovation and sustainability at the forefront of its regulatory process and implement standards for Agrivoltaics practices on renewable energy projects sited on agricultural lands.
A Project update on the proposed solar farm in Killam is attached.
Please feel free to contact Rhonda Barron if you have any questions or concerns.