ATCO Electric has been authorized by the Alberta Minister of Energy to prepare a facilities application to build and operate a new high-voltage transmission line along a corridor on the east side of the province between Edmonton and Calgary. Upon approval of the facilities application by the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC), ATCO Electric will construct and operate the new line. The Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO), in its recently released Long-term Transmission System Plan, estimates the project will cost $1.65 billion and it is anticipated that the majority of these costs will be incurred after 2011.
This major high-voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission project, which will connect an area northeast of Edmonton to a southern hub in the Brooks/Bow Island area, is a key component of the Long-term Transmission System Plan and will bolster the province's electricity transmission system.
"We fully support the province's approach to transmission reinforcement and are eager to begin an extensive public consultation process, carefully listening to all landowners and affected parties," says Sett Policicchio, ATCO Electric president. "Transmission reinforcement is vital to Alberta's future economic development and this project will help ensure safe, reliable electrical service to all Albertans."
As part of the preparation of a facilities application to the AUC, ATCO Electric will now begin to determine the exact route for the transmission line, thoroughly considering any potential impacts to landowners, First Nations, communities and the environment.
The company is currently constructing two major transmission lines in northern Alberta, totalling approximately 360 km. With these projects and the award-winning 350-km Dover to Whitefish line completed in 2004, ATCO Electric is an experienced developer of transmission lines and is well positioned to carry out this major program in the coming years.