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Quebec seeks aboriginal wind farms  

Hydro-Québec will hand out 500 megawatts of wind power contracts to aboriginal developers and those in remote communities, the government said.

Those developers will be allowed to sell their electricity at a higher price than the private developers who won wind-power contracts announced last week, said Natural Resources Minister Claude Béchard.

Farms operated by aboriginal developers and in remote communities will be able to submit their proposals with a higher price cap – 9.5 cents per kilowatt-hour, compared to the 8.7 cents for private wind power projects.

A higher price cap means smaller developments will benefit from more wiggle room when developers prepare their tenders, Béchard said.

“We put a maximum on it, instead of simply saying the best price wins, in order to get the best projects in terms of economic and social benefits,” he said in Quebec City.

The province will formally launch the tender process in the fall. It will choose 20 bids of 25 megawatts each, for rollout between 2012 and 2014.

The wattage announced Tuesday comes a week after Quebec unveiled 15 winning bids to develop 2,004 megawatts of power, one of the largest wind energy investments in Canada.

Hydro-Québec accepted 15 of 66 proposals put forward but was criticized for rejecting many projects put forward by aboriginal and remote communities.

Interested developers will have a chance to submit their comments on the bidding process over the next 45 days.

The formal tender process will be launched in the fall.

CBC News

13 May 2008

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

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