NORTH STORMONT – Work at EDP Renewable’s Nation Rise Wind Farm project is set to soon resume following a decision by the Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO).
The decision, obtained by the Standard-Freeholder, outlines that the IESO agreed to provide an extension to the project’s commercial operation date of June 17, 2021 and in doing so, provided EDP Renewables with additional time to complete it.
The announcement by the IESO stems from a letter having been sent to various provincial officials by a group of North Stormont residents opposed to the wind farm project. In it, the group alleged that EDP Renewables was in breach of contract with the IESO, having passed its initial commercial operation date deadline.
In all, the company had four years to complete the 29 wind turbine project – as of press time however, the work had yet to be concluded.
“There is no apparent excuse for this government not to take prompt action on this unique opportunity to cancel with minimal cost if any, to the taxpayer,” the Aug. 31 letter concluded.
For its part, the Nation Rise Wind Farm Limited Partnership requested force majeure relief. Force majeure events are situation beyond a proponent’s reasonable control that prevents performance of contract obligations, such as a project being completed by a certain date.
The IESO, a not-for-profit corporate entity established to oversee the province’s power system, agreed with EDP Renewables.
“The IESO has assessed that Nation Rise is entitled to force majeure relief,” Andrew Dow, supervisor of media relations at IESO told the Standard-Freeholder. “It was granted due to the revocation of the proponent’s Renewable Energy Approval, which prevented the project from being completed by the time required in the contract and was outside of the proponent’s reasonable control.”
“The new milestone commercial operation date takes into account the period of time lost as a result of the revocation, as well as the additional time required to remobilize workers and specialized equipment and complete the work that was interrupted.”
Back in Dec., the project came to a grinding halt after the decision by Ontario Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks Jeff Yurek to revoke the project’s Renewable Energy Approval (REA). The minister’s claim was that going forward with the wind turbines would endanger local bat colonies. Yet earlier this year, in May, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice quashed the minister’s decision, following a hearing in April. In doing so, it reinstated the project’s REA and with it, signalled the resumption of work.
“EDP Renewable is committed to bringing this project online quickly and responsibly,,” said Ken Little of EDP Renewable. “Unfortunately, the delays caused to purportedly revoke the project’s REA, which has subsequently been overturned by the courts, has impacted our original project timelines. We will continue to work diligently with the IESO to ensure we are compliant with all contractual requirements in order to meet our revised Milestone Commercial Operation Date.”
|Wind Watch relies entirely
on User Funding