A small-scale wind and solar developer in Saskatchewan is gaining profile as a possible catalyst for shifting the province’s newfound commitment to renewables in the direction of a European-style community ownership model.
SaskWind “wants to crowdfund $90 million to pay for six wind turbines and 30,000 solar panels spread over around 100 acres,” the National Observer reports. “The facility could produce 35 megawatts of electricity per year, enough to power around 12,000 Saskatchewan homes—all without emitting any new GHGs.”
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SaskWind President James Glennie, who’d previously been sharply critical of the province’s preference for carbon capture and storage over wind, said Europe has had notable success with community ownership and profit-sharing. He said a project in Saskatchewan could inject $100 million into local economies over 30 years and create up to 20,000 jobs.
On the Continent, “communities got together, and they tended to build smaller projects as a result, which suited their particular needs, and they provided the financing,” he told the Observer’s Christopher Adams. “I think one of the things that’s interesting and exciting about the Internet is that it’s very easy for many people to get together and each put in, say, $1,000 to finance.”
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