Alberta wind turbines. Photo by Clive Schaupmeyer

One Alberta coal plant put out 135x what the whole wind fleet did. Not 1.35x, or 13.5x, but 135x

Making lunch in Alberta at noon on Thursday, April 13 meant almost certainly your frying pan wasn’t powered by wind.

A day after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was in Winnipeg talking about “clean energy,” Alberta’s wind fleet saw its generation totally collapse.

Indeed, wind power production fell as low as 6 megawatts in total at 10:25 a.m. That’s 0.16 per cent, or 16 ten-thousandths, of the nameplate capacity of 3,618 megawatts. And by just before noon, it wasn’t much better, with only 10 megawatts output.

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And at 10:25 a.m., the last remaining coal plant in Alberta, with two generators working exclusively on coal was producing 135 times the amount of power of the entire fleet of 36 wind farms composed of hundreds of turbines and costing billions of dollars. This year, Capital Power intends on converting those last remaining coal units to natural gas, adding 210 megawatts of battery storage, converting Unit 3 to full natural gas, and be fully out of coal. That will mean the entire Alberta grid will be out of coal at that point. Carbon capture is also in development for the facility.

However, as solar power was producing 895 megawatts at the time, and demand was down significantly compared to winter due to warmer weather, the provincial pool price for electricity had fallen to $54.81 per megawatt hour. Four hours earlier, when the sun wasn’t up, but wind was very low, that price spiked to nearly $700 per megawatt hour.

 

The middle of the night saw output fall to 60 megawatts. The low appears to be at 10:25 a.m. And by 11:10 to 11:44, wind’s output floated between 10 and 13 megawatts. Only five of the 36 wind farms were producing any power whatsoever, with 31 zeros in the production column. Of the larger facilities capable of producing over 100 megawatts a piece, 13 were producing zeros.

Alberta wind power generation at 11:44 a.m., Thursday, April 13. Around that time, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was referencing “clean energy” while in Regina. MC is maximum capacity in megawatts, TNG is Total Net to Grid, in megawatts, DCR is Dispatched and accepted Contingency Reserve. Alberta Electric System Operator

Saskatchewan is on this path. SaskPower is intent on adding an additional 3,000 megawatts of wind and solar power production in this province by 2035. This will generally be done through independent power producers, with a power purchase agreement.

 

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  • 0061 SIMSA 2024 For Sask Buy Sask
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  • 0060 Arizona Lithium Lease building
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  • 0059 Southeast College Heavy Equipment Operator
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  • 0058 Royal Helium Steveville opens anonymous rocket
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  • 9002 Pipeline Online 30 sec EBEX
    9002 Pipeline Online 30 sec EBEX
  • 0055 Smart Power Be Smart with your Power office
    0055 Smart Power Be Smart with your Power office
  • 0015 Latus Viro
    0015 Latus Viro
  • 0052 Predator Inspections
    0052 Predator Inspections
  • 0051 JML Hiring Pumpjack assembly
    0051 JML Hiring Pumpjack assembly
  • 0049 Scotsburn Dental soft guitar
    0049 Scotsburn Dental soft guitar
  • 0046 City of Estevan This is Estevan
    0046 City of Estevan This is Estevan
  • 0041 DEEP Since 2018 now we are going to build
    0041 DEEP Since 2018 now we are going to build
  • 0032 IWS Summer hiring rock trailer music
  • 0022 Grimes winter hiring
  • 0021 OSY Rentals S8 Promo
  • 0018 IWS Hiring Royal Summer
  • 0013 Panther Drilling PO ad 03 top drive rigs
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