Proposed wind power project may get a new name

Richard Froese
For the Lakeside Leader

A wind power project proposed for the southeastern part of Big Lakes County might get a new name, to better identify its location.

At its March 8 meeting, county council approved a motion to suggest a new name for the project to developer Potentia Renewables. The current name is Northern Lights Wind Power, to be located on the Goose Mountain Ridge in the Swan Hills.

The new name, suggested by reeve Robert Nygaard and approved by council, is Big Lakes Wind Power.

The name change idea came up at a Jan. 25 meeting between council and the proponent.

“It was suggested that a name that more reflects Big Lakes County be (used),” said the county’s director of public works Kevin Cymbaluk, “as the current name could easily be confused with the County of Northern Lights.”

Cymbaluk followed up with the company after the January meeting. At the March 8 meeting, he read the response from Potentia. The company remains open to the name change idea, but it said Alberta Environment an Protected Areas does not support the idea.

“They (Potentia) are open to a name change,” Cymbaluk told council. “But not at this time.”

Potentia is proposing to locate about 100 wind turbines, reaching 110 metres in height, and start production in 2025. Still in the planning stages, the large-scale project could reach about 400 megawatts in size, with capital expenditures of up to $800 million, and create up to 1,000 jobs.

As for municipal revenues, they are estimated to be up to $100 million over the life of the project, council heard.

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