Four-megawatt Nine Mile River project worth up to $12m to start construction in 2014
The province has given the green light to a Hants County community wind project.
Environment Minister Randy Delorey signed off on the four-megawatt Nine Mile River project Monday.
Scotian WindFields Inc. of Dartmouth and sister company Scotian Wind Inc., a community economic development investment fund, will own the two-turbine venture in partnership with WEB Wind Energy North America Inc.
Dan Roscoe, chief operating officer of Scotian WindFields, said construction on the $10-million to $12-million project will start this winter with the goal of commissioning the windmills in late 2014.
“We’ll start some of the work throughout the winter on roads and surveying and some clearing, but most of the work will take place through the summer,” he said in an interview.
The project will ramp up to about 30 workers at peak, including road builders, electricians, power line workers, crane operators, millwrights and ironworkers.
“It’s kind of nuts-and-bolts construction work other than the fact that the crane is a little bigger than what we see in other construction sites,” Roscoe said.
Vestas Wind Systems, a European wind energy components manufacturer, is supplying the project with turbines and towers.
The Danish company is expected to source most of the components from manufacturing facilities in North America, Roscoe said, which may include Trenton wind farm parts manufacturer DSTN.
“They will provide all the components. It’s up to them to decide who to buy components from.”
The Nine Mile River community wind project will be on a woodlot Elmsdale Lumber owns.
The nearest dwelling is a cottage that is 1.3 kilometres from the turbines.
The project’s environmental assessment, which Strum Consulting of Bedford completed for the developers, concluded that the project won’t have major environmental impacts. The report does say steps should be taken to protect and monitor some endangered bird and bat species.
Proposed measures include avoiding construction during bird breeding and nesting season, and not locating turbines near bat habitat.
Several public meetings have been held in the community, Roscoe said.
“We didn’t hear any negative feedback. The community is quite positive about the project.”
The project will sell the energy generated, enough to power about 1,150 homes, to Nova Scotia Power Inc. under the provincial community feed-in tariff program.
The project will receive 13.1 cents per kilowatt hour for 20 years, an amount the provincial regulator set.
The Utility and Review Board also set the rate of return for the project at 13 per cent.
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