Little River Harbour wind turbine to generate local power

Carla Allen callen@thevanguard.ca
Published on December 11, 2013

The transportation of gigantic wind turbine components caught the attention of passers by earlier this week in Yarmouth. The units were being delivered to Little River Harbour for installation under the direction of Scotian WindFields.

The wind energy developing team is very pleased to see years of work and preparation turning into the reality of turbines being installed says community coordinator Gay Harley.

“These are very exciting days for the staff at Scotian WindFields,” she said.

The 1.99 MW Vestas V100 turbine will output enough energy for 650 homes annually with 100 per cent of the energy consumed in the Yarmouth/Wedgeport region. The 95-metre tower will have blades measuring approximately 50 meters each.

There will be a 950-metre setback to the nearest residence. The wind turbine will offset 5,800 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.  

Several public meetings for the Little River Harbour project were held in 2012. Additional meetings will be held in the future to comply with a ComFIT award.

These awards are provided through the Dept. of Energy for projects that meet all the requirements of the provincial program, entitling a company to a long-term power purchase agreement with NS Power at the set rate approved by the Utility and Review Board.

Another ComFIT requirement is for each project is to have and maintain at least 25 citizens (already selected) from within the municipality.

Scotian WindFields has received about a dozen ComFIT awards.

Its first two projects will be installed at Little River Harbour and St. Rose, Cape Breton. A third turbine is being erected in the Parkers Cove area under an older power purchase agreement with NS Power.

In 2014 the company expects to erect more turbines in the Nine Mile River Area, Hard Wood hills, Beaverbank, Isle Madame and Martock ridge. There will be a third round of installs in 2015.

More than 800 Nova Scotian families share in the ownership of Scotian WindFields.

The company has committed to donate a portion of the revenue from each project to the surrounding community.

The allocation of these funds will be determined in consultation with a local community liaison committee.

The contribution could be as much as $10,000 annually and may be used for a variety of community related projects. The use of proceeds is up to the community liaison committee to determine.

Depending on weather, the timetable for the Little River Harbour project is as follows: cranes for wind turbine erection arrive Dec. 17/18; tower and top components install, Dec. 23/34 and internal connections by Jan. 10.

The nearest large wind turbines to this installation are located at Pubnico Point Wind Farm, near Lower West Pubnico. These turbines are about the same height and size as the turbine that Scotian WindFields will be installing near Wedgeport, and have been in operation since 2005.

Anaia Global Renewable Energies submitted a project proposal for the Comeau’s Hill/Little River Harbour area that was rejected by the province last year.

The company estimated a workforce of 100 would be required for the two-year construction phase of its proposed $100-million project. The project would have incorporated 17 to 25 wind turbines that would have generated 45 to 50 megawatts of power.

(Note: An earlier version of the story referred to the community of Little River when it should have been Little River Harbour.)