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Updated Power Engineer Regulation responds to new industry technology

Changes in technology have resulted in updated certification requirements for operators of low-risk power plants. 

Innovative changes in power plant technology and thermal liquid heating systems have significantly improved the safety and operation of power plants. In response, industry requested that the certification requirement for supervisory operators better reflect the new technology.

“These changes will help industry respond to a tight labour market, while at the same time ensuring safety continues to be maintained.”

- Ken Hughes, Minister of Municipal Affairs

“We’ve listened to local communities and industry, providing changes that will support economic vibrancy and growth across the province.”

- George VanderBurg, MLA for Whitecourt-Ste. Anne

Stakeholder consultations held in spring 2011 indicated strong industry support for the regulatory changes.

“These updated requirements are an effective response to the changing technology in our business, supporting the continued safe operation of our innovative power systems while improving our ability to hire skilled operators in communities throughout the province.” 

- Ted Seraphim, President and CEO, West Fraser 

“The forest industry is very supportive of the new regulation. These changes recognize new technology and encourage further innovation that will benefit Alberta’s 50 forest communities.”

- Brady Whittaker, Alberta Forest Products Association

“NRGreen Power applauds these long-awaited changes. This will help Alberta industry continue to grow and be more competitive, benefiting initiatives like our green power projects, which is good news for both industry as well as every day power consumers.”

- Jim Walsh, Vice President Operations, NRGreen Power

The changes to the Power Engineers Regulation under the Safety Codes Act also include removal of high school prerequisites similar to other provinces, changes to the timing of exams to provide greater flexibility, and changes to power engineer certification and qualifications. These changes will require mechanical engineers to have the same amount of experience time as power engineers before they can receive a higher level power engineer certificate.

In addition, two new operator certificates have been created:

  • fired process heater operators for thermal liquid heating systems, and
  • steam-powered traction engine operators for historic boilers.

Under the Building Alberta Plan, our government is investing in families and communities, living within our means, and opening new markets for Alberta's resources to ensure we're able to fund the services Albertans told us matter most to them. We will continue to deliver the responsible change Albertans voted for.

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Power Engineer Regulation responds to new industry technology

From left to right: Operations Manager for West Fraser Brian Plummer; MLA for Whitecourt-Ste. Anne George VanderBurg; President and Chief Executive Officer of the Alberta Forest Products Association Brady Whittaker; and General Manager for West Fraser's Blue Ridge Lumber division Rick Johnsen. 


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