Currently in Canada, the highest producer of wind generation is at Prince Edward Island. With 204MW of wind energy being generated, the island currently supplies around a quarter of its total electrical usage. Recently it was announced by the province that they intend to increase by adding an additional 70MW of power.
The contract is currently government owned by PEI Energy Corporation. The plans that are currently set in place include a 30MW farm before 2020, and then an additional 40mw within the next decade by 2025. Canadian Wind Energy Association vice-president, Jean-Francois Nolet is please with the negotiations saying they will “continue to capitalize on its world-class wind resources.”
Potential Storage Problems
In total the island houses 6 wind farms, with a grand total of almost 90 turbines. The new plans will surely create some great short and long term jobs for the island, and the extra benefit of saving the locals some money with lower costs of living is helpful as well.
The problem however lies with the fact that Prince Edward Island currently has a peak load of around 266MW. Adding all of this additional power will surely put them over that peak. PEI leaders have indicated that they will be looking to obtain some federal infrastructure funding for their green buildings, and they plan to use this to further test new solutions for energy storage.
Generating Wind to Export
Those of you currently in the Northeast United States may eventually see some benefits of this as well. Power from wind generation has become an exported good, and PEI is currently looking for possible ways to export this commodity to places like New England, and other local Canadian provinces.
This is currently done through forms of underwater transmission cables. Brand new cable constructions are already underway in areas between PEI and New Brunswick, and this will have a great impact on the ability to export the energy off the island.
When releasing all of this information, PEI also made it clear that the introduction of these systems is vital to attack climate change. With this province taking steps to reducing their emissions from fossil fuels and updating their climate change action plan, it should encourage other provinces in the area to do the same.