Ontario Becomes Wind Power Leader In Canada

    McGuinty Government Celebrates Canada's Largest Wind Farm

    TORONTO, Oct. 30 /CNW/ -


    Ontario is the leader in wind power in Canada with today's launch of the
second phase of the Melancthon EcoPower Centre near Shelburne, Ontario.
    The announcement propels Ontario's total wind capacity to 617.5 megawatts
(MW), topping second-place Alberta, which has 545 MW of wind capacity. Quebec
is in third place, with 422 MW of capacity. The completion of this second
phase - by the end of November, will bring Ontario's total wind capacity to
673 MW.
    The Melancthon EcoPower Centre is one of three major Ontario-based wind
projects scheduled to go online in the coming weeks. Within two months, when
the two additional large wind farms begin operation, it will nearly double
Ontario's supply of wind power in one year. Ontario started the year with
491 MW of wind power and will end the year with more than 950 MW.
    The $409-million centre was built in two phases, with about 250 contract
jobs created in each phase. The project will create about 14 full-time jobs.
When fully operational, the 133-turbine Melancthon EcoPower Centre will have a
total capacity of 199.5 megawatts, enough emissions-free electricity to power
more than 52,000 homes. The first phase of the project - a 45-turbine,
67.5-megawatt wind farm - has been operating since March 2006.


    "Our drive for renewable energy has pushed Ontario from lagging to
leading the green energy charge," said George Smitherman, Deputy Premier and
Minister of Energy and Infrastructure. "It's a victory that pays off for all
Ontarians by boosting our supply of non-polluting power and it's an even
bigger victory for the Melancthon community."

    "The foresight of the Ontario government has provided an opportunity for
Canadian Hydro Developers, the local townships and the landowners to prosper
in a sustainable manner," said John Keating, CEO of Canadian Hydro Developers,
Inc., which built and operates the Melancthon EcoPower Centre.

    "This wind farm has put the Township of Melancthon on the map and allowed
some struggling farmers to stay on their farms," said Debbie Fawcett, mayor of
Melancthon Township. "It's also given us increased resources to provide
services to our community."

    "Projects like Melancthon II are supporting rural economic development
across the province by bringing investment and jobs to Ontario while also
producing clean, reliable power," said Robert Hornung, president of the
Canadian Wind Energy Association.


    -   By the end of the year Ontario will have enough wind capacity to
        power almost 250,000 homes.
    -   By the end of the year, Ontario's wind capacity will have gone from
        15 MW in 2003 to more than 950 MW, an increase of more than 6,200 per
    -   Investments in wind farms in place or under construction in Ontario
        total about $2.5 billion


    Read more about Go Green
(http://www.ene.gov.on.ca/en/air/climatechange/index.php), Ontario's action
plan on climate change. (www.gogreenontario.ca)
    Learn about Ontario's plan for cleaner, greener electricity
    Read about Canada's wind industry. (www.canwea.ca)
    Find out more about the Melancthon project

                                                      Disponible en français


    By year's end, Ontario will have more than 950 megawatts (MW) of wind
capacity online, enough to power almost 250,000 homes.
    A competitive bid process designed to attract large renewable power
projects has resulted in 547.5 MW of wind capacity being added to Ontario's
power grid since 2003. Canada's two largest wind farms, the 199.5-MW
Melancthon EcoPower Centre (http://www.canhydro.com/projects/melancthonwind/)
near Shelburne and the 189-MW Prince Wind farm in Sault Ste. Marie
(http://www.brookfieldpower.com/PowerOperations/other.htm), were built through
this competitive procurement process.
    In total, 10 large projects totalling almost 1,100 MW are proceeding or
are in service. Successful bidders receive long-term contracts, encouraging
major investments in Ontario's green energy future.
    Wind power provides a source of renewable, emissions-free energy to
support Ontario's commitment to eliminate dirty, coal-fired electricity by the
end of 2014. Using wind to produce enough electricity for just 200 homes
instead of burning coal will reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions by 2,000
tonnes in a year, the same impact as taking 417 cars off the road.
    Wind projects provide many spinoff benefits to local communities. They
create construction jobs, lease payments for Ontario farmers with turbines on
the property and provide a source of tax revenue for local municipalities.
According to the Canadian Wind Energy Association (http://www.canwea.ca/), an
estimated 3,785 people were employed in the wind industry in 2006.
    Canadian Hydro Developers, Inc. is also building the $450-million, 198 MW
Wolfe Island Wind Project near Kingston, Ontario and the $40-million, 18 MW
Royal Road Wind Project near Picton, Ontario (set to get under construction
next year).

                                                      Disponible en français

For further information:

For further information: Amy Tang, Minister's Office, (416) 327-6747;
Sylvia Kovesfalvi, Ministry of Energy and Infrastructure, (416) 327-4334

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