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Bright future for Pendleton solar farm project


Another solar farm project will be a defi- nite part of the rural landscape in Alfred- Plantagenet Township. EDF EN Canada has its energy sales contract with Ontario Hydro and is now getting feedback from area residents to help fine-tune the site location design for the project. “We’re excited to realize the project in Alfred-Plantagenet Township,” said Kevin Campbell, senior developer for the project, “and realize the benefits to the community.” The Pendleton Solar Energy Centre is a 12-megawatt solar farm project, planned for a site on County Road 19 near Pendle- ton village in Alfred-Plantagenet Township. The site is close to the transmission line for the provincial power grid and the pro- ject includes a main site for the solar array and a secondary connection site 20 metres away for the link to the provincial grid. The 140-acre site for the project is on Lot 20, Concession 8, and part of the company’s plans for site development this year includes planting more than 1000 sapling trees to create a future viewscape buffer between

Another solar farm project planned for Alfred-Plantagenet Township is closer to reality. EDF EN Canada hosted another public information open house on the project to update township residents on project status and also get their feedback for any final revisions to the site design specifications. —photo Gregg Chamberlain

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the solar farm site and adjacent properties and the roadway. Campbell noted during the Oct. 4 public open house in Curran that the viewscape buffer addition to the original project site plan is a result of public feedback during last year’s open house session. Several resi- dents attending that open house expressed concern about the visual impact of having

a solar farm set up within their area. The tree saplings planted this year will grow tall enough within the next two years to hide the completed solar array and support building from the view of neighbours and passersby. EDF EN Canada consulted with the South Nation Conservation Authority (SNC) on the types of trees best suited for the viewscape barrier and will plant conifers like spruce for themost part with a few deciduous trees like maple and honey locust. The company launched the Pendleton solar farm project last year in response to the provincial government announcing a new round of applications for independent energy supply licences under the Renewable Energy Approval Process (REAP). Earlier this year EDF EN Canada, and its investment partner, the Pikwàkanagàn First Nation, received approval for its application, which launched the current phase in its four-year project timeline. The Curran open house is part of a se- cond round for the company of both public consultation and separate archaeological, hydrogeological, and cultural impact studies to fine-tune its site location set-up. “The main reason we’re here today is to

share our preliminary information,” Camp- bell said, adding that a follow-up open house is planned for either February or March next year when the draft reports for all the studies are complete. EDF ENCanada’s plan is to have construc- tion start in Spring 2018 and completed by the end of that year. Estimated investment value of the project is between $20million to $30million.The Pendleton project is among the small- and mid-size alternative energy projects for the company. Altogether EDF EN Canada has investedmore than $3 billion on wind and solar farm developments across the country. “Solar-generated electricity is becoming more andmore competitive with traditional sources of energy,” states the company’s information brochure. The Pendleton project, once it goes on- line, will feed electricity into the provincial grid for a 20-year period before the company decommissions the site. During that period Alfred-Plantagenet Township will receive about $880,000 in both annual property taxes from EDF EN Canada and in Community Benefit Agree- ment funding.



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