Thursday, March 18, 2010

More details regarding Saskatchewan and Manitoba interconnection transmission upgrade

The Winnipeg Free Press just revealed a few more details from Manitoba Hydro regarding the proposed interconnection upgrade between the two provinces.

Most of you will already know that the two provinces plan to more than double their ability to transmit power to one another - both committing to add at least 150 megawatts of transmission capacity. Given our East-West interconnections are very weak in Canada, this is welcome news.

The Winnipeg Free Press also noted that:

"Rosann Wowchuk, minister responsible for Manitoba Hydro, signed an agreement with Saskatchewan Energy Minister Bill Boyd that will see the provinces work more closely on renewable energy development."

I have not been able to glean details of the agreement regarding renewable energy development, but I am hopeful it includes a long-term goal of connecting Manitoba's large hydro generation with Saskatchewan's huge wind generation potential.

As HydroQuebec has proven, wind and hydro are the perfect match to solve intermittency issues - when the wind is blowing, hold the water and when the wind dies down, ramp up hydro.

With Saskatchewan's wind resource and site availability far superior to that in Quebec and the potential for another 8785 MW of hydro generation in Manitoba, do SaskPower and Manitoba Hydro have long term plans of working together to oust HydroQuebec as the top seller of clean energy to the USA?

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