Perspectives: What is your perspective on wind energy?

gregweadick

Greg Weadick- MLA, Lethbridge West

On behalf of Premier Ed Stelmach and the government of Alberta, I’m proud to congratulate Lethbridge College for the unprecedented success of its Wind Turbine Technician program and its overall focus on the role wind energy will play here at home and around the world.

The program is tangible proof of the college’s commitment to innovation and providing its students with unique opportunities for success. It also shows a commitment to greening our province’s growth, not just in words but in actions.

The Wind Turbine Technician program fits very well with the province’s commitment to a greener, more sustainable future, and is a smart career choice, too. Alberta has seen almost 20 wind energy projects come online in the past 10 years and is considering more than 80 proposals for new projects.

I look forward to working with the college in the future to ensure the continued success of its efforts in this field.

rudyreger Perspectives: What is your perspective on wind energy?Rudy Reger- Energy Smart, Lethbridge

Living in southern Alberta and experiencing the many windy days makes one really think of reaping its benefits by commercially or residentially installing a rooftop wind turbine.

Wind power has been beneficial to many people for centuries to operate mills, pump water and operate other mechanical tasks. It also has become quite common for us to see the large-scale, wind energy production as we travel to Waterton or the Crowsnest Pass.

The technology is here and available to convert wind energy into electricity.

It is almost unthinkable that we would not harness wind power. It might be early for the public to readily embrace this new technology, but living in southern Alberta it just makes sense to research, educate and implement this option. Going green is a smart and economical choice; Energy Smart Canada Ltd. is a leader in renewable energy such as wind and geothermal. We would like to see more residential and commercial installations.

Wind energy for me is definitely an opportunity to research and be part of installation projects. It will enable consumers to become more energy independent, save money on their utility bill and reduce their personal carbon footprints by harvesting the free, abundant and nonpolluting energy provided by the wind

allankettles Perspectives: What is your perspective on wind energy?Allan Kettles- Benign Energy Canada II, Calgary

Allan is the former owner of a 63-megawatt wind farm near Pincher Creek.

The south wants in. The province gives no support at all for wind energy. It’s a $60-billion potential investment to southern Alberta in terms of jobs, plant construction, technological research and money for MDs [and counties] and the agriculture industry, but the government doesn’t get it. It’s too busy giving subsidies to ‘big oil.’ It only has eyes for the tar sands.

The MD of Pincher Creek gets 28 per cent of its revenue from wind farms now. If all the waiting projects were built, the MD could remove all taxes on agricultural land. Even better, the proposed projects would create some 12,000 megawatts, enough to fulfill Alberta’s daily demand of 9,000 to 10,000.

The problem is one of transportation. The wind blows, the turbines turn, but the electricity they produce can’t be delivered to the power grid because the required transmission lines haven’t been built.

These projects are fast, cheap and would employ a lot of people. They could keep small towns alive. The province lacks foresight and common sense to build things right the first time, like any farmer knows. In simple terms, they have to get more capacity on the poles.”

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