Three new Ontario wind farms begin commercial operation in one month
GODERICH, ONT-The Kingsbridge I wind energy project near Goderich, Ontario was formally opened earlier this month by provincial Energy Minister Donna Cansfield. The 40-MW project is now complete, ahead of its June 30 deadline, with all of its 22 turbines generating electricity to Ontario's electrical grid. This is the second new wind farm to open in Ontario within a month, following the 67-MW Melancthon I wind project which recently began commercial operations near Shelburne. Kingsbridge I is the first phase of a project which will ultimately add 200 MW of power, enough to supply more than 60,000 homes. This will make it one of the largest wind projects in Ontario. In November 2005, the project builder, Epcor, signed a power purchase agreement with the Ontario Power Authority for the sale of power from the 160-MW Kingsbridge II wind power project. The Melancthon and Kingsbridge openings were followed by the startup of the $186-million, 99-MW Erie Shores wind farm on the north shore of Lake Erie near Port Burwell. Its 66 turbines will generate enough electricity to power over 25,000 homes. Erie Shores was one of ten winning proposals in the government's first renewable energy request for proposals (RFP) in 2004. Three more wind farms selected under the renewables RFP process are also expected to come on line by the end of 2006, with enough capacity to power up to 80,000 homes. As of January 2006, Canada had a total installed wind power capacity of 683 MW.