B.C.’s largest wind power project now fully operational

Meikle Wind power facility | Photo: Pattern Energy Group

Construction of the Meikle Wind power project is complete, Pattern Energy Group announced February 27, increasing British Columbia’s installed wind power capacity by more than a third.

The 184.6 megawatt (MW) project, which is located 33 km north of Tumbler Ridge, uses 61 GE wind turbines that can generate enough power for 54,000 homes, Pattern said, and brings B.C.’s total wind capacity to 673.6 MW.

“Meikle Wind is now the largest wind facility in British Columbia, increasing the installed wind power capacity in the province by 37%,” Pattern CEO Mike Garland said.

“Located in a mountainous region, this project was unique for its construction, design and weather challenges.”

The project has a 25 year power-purchase agreement with BC Hydro. According to Pattern, Meikle Wind will generate an estimated $70 million in property taxes, rents, Crown lease payments and other benefits over its lifetime.

Meikle Wind may be the last wind farm built in the province for at least another ten years, because all projects of this kind require long-term power purchase agreements from BC Hydro; the Crown corporation has previously indicated it is unlikely to put out another call for power until 2030 because of its focus on the construction of the $9 billion Site C dam.

- With files from Nelson Bennett