Friday, August 31, 2012

RFP Opportunity - Consulting Services for Wastewater Treatment Plant Biogas Cogeneration Project - City of Saskatoon

The City of Saskatoon is seeking Letters of Interest (LOI) for engineering consulting services for the design, installation and commissioning of a cogeneration system using biogas at the City of Saskatoon wastewater treatment plant. The project will begin in January 2013 and run for approximately two years. Work consists of: detailed design of the cogeneration system, equipment selection, financial analysis, tender drawings and document production, tender selection, construction administration, and commissioning services. The consultant will be responsible for guiding the project from start to finish in conjunction with City of Saskatoon staff.

Interested Proponents may obtain a condensed Terms of Reference for the project from the contact information listed below after 3:00 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2012. The LOI must be received by 2:00 p.m. CST, Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012 in order to be considered. Word or Acrobat documents that are emailed will be accepted, but the responsibility for ensuring the submission is received rests with the proponent. The LOI must be not longer than 5 (five) pages. The LOI will be used to decide which three or four companies will be invited into a formal Request for Proposal process. The letter should highlight expertise in the area of cogeneration and qualifications that would indicate suitability for being selected for this project. Kindly submit an email or five copies of the letter with “WWTP Cogeneration” as the subject to: Email: Telephone: (306) 975-2534.

The RFP closes September 19, 2012.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

RFP Opportunity - Wind Power Facility Feasibility Study - City of Regina Waste Water Treatment Plant

Sealed Proposals marked “RFP #2050 – Waste Water Treatment Plant Wind Power Facility Feasibility Study” will be received by the Coordinator of Purchasing, 5th Floor, City Hall, 2476 Victoria Avenue, P.O. Box 1790, Regina, Saskatchewan, S4P 3C8, no later than 2:00 p.m. Central Standard Time, September 20, 2012. The City of Regina requires services of a consulting firm to perform a wind power facility feasibility study for the Waste Water Treatment Plant location. The services of a qualified consulting firm to provide comprehensive, expert, engineering and specialist services to achieve the objective to reduce the City’s dependency on utility-supplied electricity and greenhouse gas emissions at the Waste Water Treatment Plant. Interested proponents may obtain a copy of the Request for Proposals from the office of the Coordinator of Purchasing, by calling (306) 777-7333 or emailing The City invites proposals for these services and reserves the right to reject any or all proposals.

The RFP closes September 20, 2012

Nova Scotia selects three wind power projects totalling 115.8 MW in RFP process: $200 million CAD private sector investment expected

The projects, in Lunenburg and Guysborough counties in the Eastern Canadian coastal province of Nova Scotia include:

- 78 MW South Canoe Wind Project between Chester and Windsor, led by Oxford Frozen Foods;
- 24 MW South Canoe Wind Project in Lunenburg County, led by Minas Basin Pulp and Power; and
- 13.8 MW Sable Wind Project near Canso, led by the Municipality of the District of Guysborough.

According to the province government, the selected projects represented the most cost-effective offers. The average purchase price was in the mid-$70s per megawatt hour, lower than those in the 2007 call for bids in Nova Scotia. Nova Scotia Power is a minority investor in each of the projects.

Collectively, these projects are expected to bring total wind energy close to the 500 megawatt wind threshold by 2015. This is near the technical limit of the amount that can be integrated into the province's electricity grid, according to the 2008 Nova Scotia Wind Integration Study by Hatch Energy. Consequently, the province does not expect to issue more request for proposals for large-scale wind projects in the near future.

The Renewable Electricity Administrator (REA) was appointed by the province to call for bids, evaluate bid submissions and select winning projects based on which projects provide the best value for ratepayers.

The process also completes an objective of the province's renewable electricity plan to determine if the utility or Independent Power Producers could build the lowest-cost renewables for the province. The competition indicates a partnership model produces the best results.

Sources: CANWea, Government of Nova Scotia

Monday, August 27, 2012

Fulcrum Bioenergy receives conditional USDA loan guarantee for Nevada MSW ethanol plant - outlook improves for possible Nipawin, Saskatchewan project

Fulcrum BioEnergy Inc. received a $105 million USD condition loan guarantee from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), putting its planned 10 MMgy Sierra BioFuels Plant in Nevada closer to groundbreaking.

“It will be early next year before we break ground, and 18 months after that before we’re ready to commercially produce ethanol,” said Rick Barraza, vice president of administration. The property has been acquired, the necessary permits in place, and Fluor Corp. has completed the engineering plan. Fluor will serve as the engineering, procurement and construction contractor.

The Sierra Biofuels Plant is located approximately 30 km. east of Reno, Nevada; the facility has two feedstock supply agreements in place. Waste Connections Inc. will supply presorted MSW from its waste processing facility in El Dorado County, California, and Fulcrum has a 15-year agreement with Waste Management of Nevada to deliver post-sorted MSW. Fulcrum also has a three-year off-take agreement in place with Tenaska Biofuels, to buy the cellulosic ethanol at market price. “We’re able to do that because of the low cost nature of the process,” Barraza said, “And, getting MSW feedstock at no cost.”

The Fulcrum technology is a two-step thermochemical process. First, 4-inch pieces of organic materials are gasified in a plasma-enhanced gasifier which uses heat, pressure, steam and a little bit of oxygen. “It doesn’t burn, it breaks down into carbon monoxide, hydrogen and carbon dioxide, or what we call syngas,” Barraza told EPM. The gas is cleaned and then run through a licensed catalytic technology jointly developed by Nipawin Biomass Ethanol New Generation Co-operative Ltd. and Saskatchewan Research Council. The demonstration plant incorporates a full-scale reactor tube and process, identical to those to be used in Fulcrum’s large-scale plants.

Fulrum are partners with the Nipawin Economic Development Committee and Saskatchewan Research Council (SRC) to develop a cellulose conversion industry for the production of fuel-grade ethanol from residual agricultural and forestry biomass in the Nipawin region of North-Eastern Saskatchewan.

Source: Ethanol Producer Magazine

Friday, August 24, 2012

Quebec pension plans invest $100 million CAD in leading Canadian independent renewable power producer, Innergex

The Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec (the "Caisse") is investing close to $100 million CAD in a Quebec-based hydroelectric company. The Caisse manages investments for public and private pension and insurance plans in Quebec.

The pension fund manager recently reported that it bought 9.6 million common shares of Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. for $10.27 CAD per share for a total cost of $98.9 million CAD.

The investment comes at a time when Innergex is taking on new hydroelectric acquisitions in Quebec and Ontario. Innergex recently announced a purchase and sale agreement with Hydromega Group of Companies to acquire its 70 per cent interest in the Magpie hydroelectric facility in northeastern Quebec for $30.3 million, plus another $52 million in debt. Innergex expects the Magpie acquisition to close by the end of September, 2012. The Magpie facility produces enough electricity to power almost 11,000 households every year, and sells all of its electricity to Hydro-Quebec as part of a 25-year PPA.

Innergex also signed a letter of intent with Hydromega for the acquisition of its ownership interest in six other hydroelectric projects in Quebec and Ontario, and also announced plans to acquire Wildmare, a wind energy project in British Columbia. Price tags for those deals were not disclosed.

Source: The Canadian Press

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Nordex secures first Supply Contract for 9 turbines on Finnish wind farm

Nordex won a contract to deliver and install nine turbines for a wind farm in southwest Finland, the first deal under an agreement struck with Helsinki-based fund manager Taaleritehdas Oy to finance wind projects in Finland. Construction on the project, with 21.6 MW capacity, will begin in the spring of 2013, Nordex said in a statement.

“This is a further key order for our N117 turbine,” said Lars Krogsgaard, chief sales officer of Hamburg-based Nordex.

Under the June 29, 2012 agreement with Taaleritehdas, as many as 111 turbines will be shipped and installed by Nordex in projects financed by the fund manager across Finland, with total capacity seen at 260 MW. That would be more than the installed wind power capacity of 197 MW in Finland as of the end of 2011, according to the Finnish Wind Power Association.

Finland plans to produce 38 percent of its power from renewable energy by 2020, up from 32 percent now.

Sources: Reuters, Nordex, Finnish Wind Power Association

Friday, August 17, 2012

10 facts about energy in China

  1. China is the world's largest consumer of energy and accounts for a staggering 21% of global energy use. By comparison Canada accounts for 2.7%.
  2. Energy use in China has increased by more than 150% in the past decade.
  3. Per capita energy use in China is far below the US, Canada, South Korea, Russia, Japan and the EU.
  4. China's manufacturing sector accounts for nearly 60% of all consumption.
  5. China generates more than 70% of their energy from coal.
  6. China has doubled its coal production in the past decade.
  7. Coal consumption has increased by 200% in the past decade.
  8. China's renewable capacity is at 133 GW and growing fast - mostly from hydro and wind.
  9. Solar PV is the most expensive electricity source in China.
  10. Natural gas consumption is now outpacing production in China.
Source: Goldman Sachs Report on Sustainable Growth in China: Spotlight on China, August 13, 2012

Thursday, August 16, 2012

AESI and Canada Powerhouse agree to deliver biomass energy solutions in Western Canada to service emerging and growing biomass industry in the region

Alternative Energy Solutions International Inc. (AESI) and Canada Powerhouse, (the Technical Sales Division of Exclusive Boilers, Burners & Controls) (EBBC) announced today that they have established and are proceeding with an important agreement for representation throughout Western Canada. This partnership will leverage each company’s strengths and bring the highest level of service and satisfaction to the Canadian biomass markets.

“Exclusive Boilers, Burners & Controls, (EBBC) through their technical sales division, Canada Powerhouse, has begun to market and support AESI, Inc. and Uniconfort, in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, North West Territories and the Yukon. Uniconfort and AESI, Inc have over 5,000 installations operating worldwide, said David Daniels, president and CEO of AESI. “We are pleased to have the benefit of Canada Powerhouses’ continued direction. Together, we will create an optimal sales and service model for the very important, emerging and growing biomass industry in Canada.”

According to Dale Mazur, General Manager of EBBC, “AESI and Uniconfort are a game changer for the worlds CO2 and NOx emissions. Coupled or stand alone with our Co-generation capabilities, not only will energy centers realize benefits of reducing fuel consumption as well as emissions; the owners significantly reduce operating costs. Business and the environment wins. EBBC receives a considerable amount of requests for District Heating, Cogeneration, and emission reductions; we looked very hard at other technologies and realized that Uniconfort and AESI had a proven track record focused on very key areas often over looked. We further evaluated their business approach and were extremely pleased to discover that the technologies were not “locked” to other services. This allows EPC’S, engineering firms, and the customer to determine what level of involvement they prefer. No question that the company made the right decision to move forward with AESI and Uniconfort.”

Source: AESI and EBBC Press Release

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Sprott Power seeking financing for $33 million to acquire Wind Canada Investments

For the third time in the past year, a Canadian company has chosen to raise cash to fund a takeover by way of an offering of extendible convertible unsecured subordinated debentures.

In the deal, the financing of which is expected to close next week, Sprott Power is buying all the shares of Wind Canada Investments for 22.13¢ each, which will then give it ownership of two operating assets, one of which, Glen Dhu, is the largest wind farm in Nova Scotia. (Wind Canada owns 51% of Glen Dhu.) Sprott Power has raised $30 million, which may be boosted by $4.5 million if the underwriters exercise their options.

The deal, in which investors are being offered a yield of 6.75%, represents a move into the big leagues as it will boost Sprott Power’s operating assets by 80%. The company has operations in Nova Scotia and Ontario. Sprott’s current portfolio is about 80 megawatts, which will rise to 144MW, if the acquisition goes through. But the company, according to its website, had some major plans prior to this transaction, with a development portfolio in Nova Scotia, Quebec, Ontario and Saskatchewan. By 2015 it had plans to generate 500 MW of power.

Sprott Power has locked up the support of Wind Canada shareholders who own 74% of the outstanding shares. Spanish-based Inveravante Inversiones Universales S.L. is Wind Canada’s largest shareholder with a 66% fully diluted stake.

Sprott Power’s focus is on the development, ownership and operation of renewable energy projects. It pays a dividend and is managed by Sprott Power Consulting LP, a business unit of Sprott Inc.

Offerings of extendible convertible unsecured debentures are rare in Canada, with companies planning acquisitions preferring to issue subscription receipts that in effect get converted into common shares when the transaction closes.

On this deal, and as with the other two, that option wasn’t available, because Sprott Power is small with a market cap of $68 million. The option isn’t available because of the large discount to current market price that would have to occur to raise a decent slug of common equity.

Convertibles are attractive because there is no dilution — all the company faces is the need to make the semi-annual payments. And dilution is taken care of, because the conversion price on the debentures is set at a healthy premium (in this case 30%.)

Source: Financial Post, FP Street, Barry Critchley

Monday, August 13, 2012

Canadian Solar receives $93 Million CAD loan from China to fund growth

Canadian Solar Inc., the world’s third-largest maker of solar panels, received a $93 million CAD loan from state-owned China Development Bank Corp. as it expands in North America. The five-year facility will be used to part-finance the recent acquisition of a stake in 16 photovoltaic projects in Ontario from developer SkyPower Ltd.

The loan is its first from this bank, company data show. Canadian Solar’s expansion into project development enables it to increase control over sales of its products as panel prices weaken. It also gives the company access to Ontario’s feed-in tariff program, which offers premium rates for electricity generated from renewable sources.

Canadian Solar, which is based in the province of Ontario and has production facilities in China, had about $88 million CAD in long- term debt from Agricultural Bank of China Ltd. (601288), Bank of Communications Co. and Export-Import Bank of China at the end of last year, according to the company’s latest results.

China Development Bank has offered $47.3 billion USD since 2010 to support the country’s wind and solar manufacturers, a credit line that’s only been partially tapped, according to London- based researcher Bloomberg New Energy Finance.

Under Canadian Solar’s April accord with SkyPower, it agreed to pay $187 million CAD for a majority interest in 190 to 200 megawatts of permitted PV projects. Its largest global competitors are Suntech Power Holdings Co. and First Solar Inc.

Sources: Reuters, Bloomberg New Energy Finance, Canadian Solar Inc. Press Release

Friday, August 10, 2012

Saskatchewan has highest per capita greenhouse gas emissions in Canada

Saskatchewan's per capita greenhouse gas emissions have declined slightly in recent years but remain the highest in Canada, a report from the Canadian Federal government indicates.

Per capita emissions in 2010 were estimated at 69.8 tonnes of greenhouse gas per person, more than triple the all-Canada rate, which was 20.3 tonnes per person, according to Canada’s Emissions Trends Report that was released Wednesday by Environment Canada.

The Saskatchewan figure was down 1.8 per cent from 2005, when per capita emissions were 71.1 tonnes per person.

Environment Canada report measures carbon dioxide (CO2), the main greenhouse gas, or its equivalent.

The report notes that provinces like Saskatchewan that depend on fossil fuels for their electricity generation tend to have per capita emissions above the national average.

The per capita drop happened in part because the population has increased over the five year period.

In fact, according to the report, the province's total greenhouse emissions actually increased from 71 megatonnes to 73 megatonnes between 2005 and 2010.

Saskatchewan and Alberta were the only provinces that saw their total emissions increase.

Over the next decade, it's projected total emissions in Saskatchewan will fall, however, from 73 megatonnes to 64 megatonnes.

"The decline in emissions from 2005 to 2020 in Saskatchewan, Ontario, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are due in large part to government measures related to coal-fired electricity," the report said.

Under the 2009 Copenhagen Accord, Canada is committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to 17 per cent below 2005 levels by 2020.

Source: CBC and Canada's Emissions Trends 2012 - Government of Canada Report

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

SNC-Lavalin wins district cooling project in Mecca, Saudi Arabia

SNC-Lavalin will build a district cooling system in the Saudi city of Mecca, site of the annual hajj, a pilgrimage that attracts Muslims from around the world, under a $92 million CAD contract announced yesterday.

The Montreal-based company, which provides engineering and project management services around the world, said construction is expected to begin this quarter under a contract from a subsidiary of Saudi Tabreed District Cooling Co.

District cooling uses a central plant to chill water that is then distributed to several other buildings that use the water to cool themselves before the water is returned to the central plant.

The first phase of the project, a chilled water production plant for the Jebel Omar Development, is planned for December 2013.

“We are delighted with receiving this contract, particularly because it is the third district cooling plant contract awarded to us in Saudi Arabia since May 2010,” SNC executive vice-president Charles Chebl said.

“This contract reflects our strategy of bringing the full spectrum of our global expertise to the region, and attests to SNC-Lavalin’s world-class leadership in the district cooling sector.”

Maxim Sytchev of Alta Corp Capital said the contract is relatively small, representing 2.7 per cent of its infrastructure and environment backlog and one per cent of its overall backlog.

“But it does show that the company’s clients continue to award contracts to SNC-Lavalin despite the negative news flow overhang,” he wrote in a report.

The ability to win contracts has been a key investor concern since internal problems arose in March.

“We view this contract as an important step in re-establishing investor confidence,” he said, point to it as the first international deal of size in months.
Source: Canadian Press

Finavera receives wind farm construction permit for 47 MW Tumbler Ridge project in North-Eastern British Columbia

Finavera Wind Energy Inc. recently announced it has received a General Area Licence of Occupation for the 47 MW Tumbler Ridge Wind Energy Project located in northeastern British Columbia. The Licence, which was issued by the British Columbia Ministry of Forest, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, provides the approval for construction to commence on the project. The Tumbler Ridge Wind Energy Project recently received an Environmental Assessment Certificate and has a 25 year power purchase agreement with B.C. Hydro.

The $125 million CAD project will be located 8 kilometres west of the town of Tumbler Ridge in the province of British Columbia. Once completed, the project will generate enough power to provide electricity for up to 18,000 homes. The 12 month project construction period is expected to generate 560 person years of direct employment, and the operational phase of the project is expected to create 188 person years of full-time direct employment.

Finavera Wind Energy CEO Jason Bak said, “This is a key milestone for the Tumbler Ridge Wind Energy Project and allows Finavera to progress through the final steps towards construction of this project. Our next steps are to finalize financing for the project, execute a turbine supply agreement, and contract a group to undertake the construction process.”

Source: Finavera Press Release