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RES and Cowessess First Nation to Accelerate Renewable Energy Goals in Saskatchewan

by RES | Jun 17, 2021 | Reading time: 3 min

Bekevar Wind L.P. Partnership secures 200 MW Wind Power Purchase Agreement with SaskPower

RES (Renewable Energy Systems) and partner Cowessess First Nation are pleased to announce a tender award with SaskPower for a 200 MW wind project located south of Kipling, in southeastern Saskatchewan.

The 200 MW Bekevar Wind Energy Project will consist of approximately 40 turbines, underground medium-voltage electrical collector system, access roads, a substation, two permanent meteorological towers, and an operations and maintenance building.  SaskPower is expected to build a 10km long transmission line to connect the project to the provincial grid. The turbines are planned on a 20,000 acre area that overlaps with the RMs of Hazelwood and Kingsley, and about 500 acres of reserve land.

The project will produce enough electricity to power approximately 100,000 homes and plays a significant part in de-carbonizing the Saskatchewan power generation fleet by displacing coal power dispatched by SaskPower.  Bekevar Wind Energy Project will help the province achieve the federal target of phasing out conventional coal generation by 2030 and help SaskPower meet its target of 50% reduction of emissions from 2005 levels by 2030.

The project benefits of the Bekevar Wind Energy Project include:

  • Providing affordable, zero-carbon electricity to Saskatchewan for 25 years
  • Annual property and school tax revenues
  • Annual lease payments and/or royalties to participating landowners
  • Construction and operational jobs and support services during construction and throughout the life of the project
  • Contracting opportunities for local businesses
  • Increased local spending on goods and services during project development, construction, and operational phases
  • Indigenous ownership, in addition to commitment to Indigenous employment and subcontracting

The project is owned by Bekevar Wind L.P. a partnership between Renewable Energy Systems Canada Inc. (RES) and Awasis Nehiyawewini Energy Development, a wholly owned Cowessess First Nation entity. Construction on the project is expected to begin in the summer of 2022 and is slated for completion by the end of 2023.

“Saskatchewan is an ideal place to build some of the most cost-effective wind power in the world.  With many world-class renewables companies qualified to bid, the tender was highly competitive and RES and its partner, Cowessess First Nation, strove to deliver best value to SaskPower,” said Peter Clibbon, RES Senior VP of Development. “We are committed to delivering a quality project on schedule and deliver significant economic benefits to the host communities.”

“Cowessess First Nation has been pursuing utility scale wind energy development since the incorporation of ANEDC in 2010.  This is the third Request for Proposal in nine years Cowessess has bid into SaskPower with our partners.  To be awarded the Bekevar project in collaboration with RES is a milestone for our First Nation, which helps continue to lead Indigenous renewable energy development in Saskatchewan.” Said Chief Cadmus Delorme.  “We look forward to utilizing what Mother Earth has granted us with, while working with RES to help Saskatchewan achieve the desired carbon reduction targets.”

About RES in Canada

RES  is the world’s largest independent renewable energy company active in onshore and offshore wind, solar, energy storage, transmission and distribution. At the forefront of the industry for 39 years, RES has delivered more than 21GW of renewable energy projects across the globe and supports an operational asset portfolio exceeding 7GW worldwide for a large client base. Understanding the unique needs of corporate clients, RES has secured 1.8GW of power purchase agreements (PPAs) enabling access to energy at the lowest cost. RES employs more than 3,000 people and is active in 10 countries. For more, visit www.res-group.com.

About Awasis Nehiyawewini Energy Development

ANEDC is owned by Cowessess Ventures Ltd, the economic development corporation which oversees the business assets of the Cowessess First Nation.  ANEDC was incorporated in 2010 and has been actively pursuing utility scale wind projects in Saskatchewan since that time.  More recently, ANEDC has become active in solar and currently holds a 20 year power purchase agreement with SaskPower for 10MW of solar generation which is being developed by Awasis Solar Limited Partnership.  Within the Cowessess portfolio of renewable energy the community is also please to own a 1MW wind, solar and lithium ion battery facility, as well as on reserve solar net metering of five community owned buildings.  ANEDC is headquartered in Regina, Saskatchewan.   For more, visit  www.cowessessventures.com.

About Cowessess First Nation

Cowessess First Nation is located in south east Saskatchewan, 16 km north of Broadview in the picturesque Qu’Appelle Valley.  Cowessess has 4300 members, 950 of which live on the home reserve.  The First Nation is focused on four foundational pillars: a) Cultural Rejuvenation B) Political Sovereignty, C) Effective and Efficient Administration and D) Economic Self Sustainability.  Cowessess is a Treaty Land Entitlement First Nation and over the years has amassed over 120,000 acres of agriculture and urban land holdings.  The primary purpose for the land acquisitions was future sustainability and economic viability.  The land holding purchase in the Kipling Area by Cowessess will now be home to one of the largest wind farms in south east Saskatchewan.   For more, visit  www.cowessessfn.com.


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