GDF Suez Canada and its joint venture partners Mitsui and Fiera Axium Infrastructure have commissioned the 99MW Cape Scott wind project on Vancouver Island in British Columbia.
Equipped with 55 Vestas V100 turbines of 1.8MW each, the €219m project could generate more than 290GWh of energy annually, which is enough electricity to power approximately 100,000 British Columbians.
The project, which is the joint venture's tenth wind installation in Canada, has injected more than $51m into the local economy and created around 300 construction jobs and 12 fulltime jobs for its operations and maintenance.
Situated about 40km west of Port Hardy within the territories of the Kwakiutl, Quatsino, and Tlatlasikwala First Nations and outside of Cape Scott Provincial Park, the project will sell its output to BC Hydro under a 20-year power purchase agreement signed between the parties in 2010.
GDF SUEZ Canada president Mike Crawley said, "The Cape Scott Wind Project represents a significant engineering feat and strengthens our position as one of the leading renewable energy generators in Canada."
Previous project owner Sea Breeze Power has identified the site, sought necessary permits, assessed the wind resource, secured the electricity purchase agreement with BC Hydro, as well as completed provincial and federal environmental assessments before selling it to GDF Suez Canada.
AMEC Black & McDonald was responsible for the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) of the project, which is claimed to be the first wind energy project to be approved by the Environmental Assessment Office of British Columbia, and the construction works began in summer 2011.
AMEC has upgraded 18km of existing forestry road to accommodate heavy shipments; constructed 33km of site access roads and 40km of 138kV transmission line from the project substation located at Port Hardy; built foundations, electrical collector system and switchyard; and erected and commissioned the turbines.
Image: The Cape Scott wind project has commenced commercial operations. Photo: courtesy of GDF Suez Canada.