Small Scale Generation Regulation
In this decision, the AUC approved the application from Metis Economic Trade and Industrial Services Corporation (“MÉTIS Corp.”) to construct and operate a 4.86-megawatt (“MW”) solar power plant designated as the Métis Crossing Solar Project (“the Project”), to qualify the power plant as a community generating unit, and to connect the power plant to the ATCO Electric Ltd. distribution system
MÉTIS Corp. applied for approval to construct and operate a 4.86-MW solar power plant, and to connect the project to ATCO Electric’s distribution system, pursuant to sections 11 and 18 of the Hydro and Electric Energy Act. Further MÉTIS Corp. applied for the project to be qualified as a community generating unit, as described in Section 3 of the Small Scale Generation Regulation (“SSGR”).
The project’s renewable energy referral report provided by Alberta Environment and Parks (“AEP”) stated that the project posed a low risk to wildlife and wildlife habitat.
A noise impact assessment form was submitted that indicated compliance with Rule 12: Noise Control. A participant involvement program was conducted in accordance with Rule 007: Application for Power Plants, Substations, Transmission Lines, Industrial System Designation and Hydro Developments. MÉTIS Corp. stated that there were no concerns raised by stakeholders.
In support of its application to have the project qualified as a community generating unit, in accordance with the SSGR, MÉTIS Corp. provided a community benefits statement describing the economic, environmental, and social benefits that the project would confer on the Métis Nation of Alberta. METIS Corp confirmed that the Project would be owned by MÉTIS Corp., which in turn is wholly owned by the Métis Nation of Alberta. MÉTIS Corp. stated that the Métis Nation of Alberta meets the definition of a community group under subsection 1(e)(vii) of the SSGR, as it is a society registered under the Societies Act.
ATCO Electric confirmed that, if the AUC approved the Project, it would cover the cost of metering for the Project.
The AUC considered these applications under sections 11 and 18 of the Hydro and Electric Energy Act, the SSGR, and section 17 of the Alberta Utilities Commission Act.
The AUC determined that an accurate estimate for the cost to purchase the meter, which is eligible for compensation under subsection 5(2)(a) of the SSGR was $35,302. The AUC was satisfied that as the distribution facility owner, ATCO Electric was entitled to recover the $35,302 incurred to purchase the meter for the Project pursuant to subsection 5(3)(a)(i) of the SSGR. Notwithstanding this determination, the AUC imposed the condition that MÉTIS Corp. must provide the AUC with written confirmation of the actual cost to purchase the meter. The confirmation was to be submitted within 30 days after the power plant was in service.
The AUC found that MÉTIS Corp. must comply with the requirements of Rule 033. Accordingly, the AUC made the approval conditional upon MÉTIS Corp.’s submission of a post-construction monitoring survey report to AEP and the AUC within 13 months of the Project becoming operational, and on or before the same date every subsequent year for which AEP requires surveys, pursuant to subsection 3(3) of Rule 033: Post-Approval Monitoring Requirements for Wind and Solar Power Plants.
The AUC approved the Project subject to the noted conditions.