HFCRD, HPSD & GPCSD Switch to Wind Energy

  Posted: February 1, 2016

Holy Family Catholic Regional Division (HFCRD), High Prairie School Division (HPSD) and Grande Prairie Catholic School District (GPCSD) are pleased to announce that effective January 2016, all three divisions’ schools and central offices are now powered by wind energy.   HFCRD, HPSD, and GPCSD are among 24 Alberta school divisions that entered in the Alberta Schools Commodity Purchasing Consortium (CPC) in 2005 in response to the volatile energy prices in the early 2000s.  The aim of the CPC was to find an alternative energy source that also provided a more stable source of energy.  HFCRD, HPSD and GPCSD are proud to be the only school divisions in Peace Country participating in the CPC, which is expected to reduce an estimated 80,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions annually, which is equivalent to the emissions of 16,842 passenger vehicles.  All three divisions, who each signed 25 year contracts, are pleased to proactively reduce the carbon footprint of schools and work toward being green energy leaders in the education sector.

In order to change to wind energy, the CPC created the Bull Creek Wind Facility.  The project included the construction of 17 turbines located 20km Northeast of Provost, as well as access roads, power lines, distribution-level connection equipment and an operations facility. The CPC contracted the construction of the Bull Creek Wind Facility to BlueEarth Renewable Energy Inc. of Calgary through a competitive public process.  The facility began full operations at the beginning of January 2016 and has a nameplate capacity of 29 megawatts, producing enough renewable energy annually to power nearly 500 school facilities across Alberta.

Each division in the CPC is now earning quarterly 10% rebates and is expected to earn their investment back in approximately 15 years, with the strong probability that the project will become profitable in the remaining 10 years of the contract.  The three divisions look forward to continuing a greener path with their energy consumption and being role models for future generations.

More information about the Bull Creek Wind Project can be found here http://www.bluearthrenewables.com/portfolio/bull-creek-wind-project/  and a video about the project can be found here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nN7v4E6oBOA&feature=youtu.be.