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Suncor expanding wind power in Hand Hills

Suncor, one such company, is planning on expanding their investment in wind power, building a new wind farm in the Hand Hills near Delia.

As part of the process, Suncor is inviting residents to participate in an open house at the Delia Community Centre, on Wednesday, May 2, between 4 and 8 p.m.

“We’re at an early stage in this project, and as part of that process we do community consultation to inform the community about the nature of the project and what’s happening,” said Michael Southern, a spokesperson for Suncor.

The purpose of the meeting is for Suncor to present the new project to residents and as an opportunity to gather feedback from the community.

The information gathering process will continue for the remainder of 2012. The project will likely not be approved until 2013, with construction starting thereafter.

“It’s quite a lengthy process to make sure there’s community engagement and awareness,” said Southern.

Suncor expanded its operations to include wind power starting in 2002 in Gull Lake, Saskatchewan. Over the past decade, they have constructed wind farms in five other locations, including the Wintering Hills near Drumheller.

“Renewable energy is an important part of the energy portfolio for Suncor,” said Southern.

The intent is for the Hand Hills project to produce roughly 80 megawatts, which is on par with the scale of the Wintering Hills. However, Southern cautioned this is early in development, and it’s hard to know for certain the scale and timeline of the project.

To learn more or offer feedback, residents are encouraged to attend the meeting on May 2, between 4 and 8 p.m., to speak with Suncor representatives.