“Alberta has a strong renewable energy sector and we are committed to ensuring its ongoing success. On Aug. 3, Alberta’s government announced we will be conducting an inquiry into regulations surrounding renewables production to ensure that the right processes are in place to support continued investment. To help the inquiry and ensure that, moving forward, every project will be subject to the same regulations and processes, we directed the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) to pause approvals of renewable power projects until Feb. 29, 2024.
“At the same time, the AUC announced it will be engaging with industry partners to provide the best focus to the inquiry and to determine how it will implement a pause on approvals. After receiving a significant amount of feedback, the AUC released a statement earlier this week explaining its approach to the inquiry. This feedback reflects industry’s commitment to ensuring Alberta remains a leader in renewable energy projects while meeting the needs and concerns of Albertans going forward.
“I am confident in this process and the clarity it is providing to our partners in the renewable energy space. I also want to reiterate that, throughout the inquiry, the AUC will continue to process applications up to the approval stage for new projects that produce renewable electricity. To be clear, no projects have been cancelled. Projects already underway will continue to be built. Jobs are not at risk.
“We need to protect the reliability and affordability of our electricity grid when it comes to adding intermittent power sources in a short period of time. We also need to consider and address concerns about land usage, reclamation, and protecting Alberta’s world-class views. Following the inquiry, we anticipate that there will be changes to the regulations for renewables in Alberta. Any changes will consider the needs and concerns of regulators, landowners, municipalities, investors and Albertans.
“In response to misinformation being developed and released by interest groups, the Ministry of Affordability and Utilities has released a fact sheet that is available online.
“Alberta has the most investor-friendly system in Canada for renewables and this pause will help set a regulatory standard for all projects to attain now and into the future.”