By Medicine Hat News on November 30, 2019.
The largest solar power facility in Alberta is about to be eclipsed.
The Brooks Solar facility, visible from Highway 1 near that city, has long been promoted as the largest such power-generating facility in the province at 15 megawatts.
In December another project of the plant owner, Vancouver-based Elemental Energy, is set to come on line in Innisfail. That array has a peak production capacity of 23 megawatts and could be in production mid-month, according to a notice on the Alberta Electrical System Operator.
The new facility’s place on top could be short-lived however.
This week hearings begin in Brooks regarding a potential tripling of the size of that plant, onto two adjoining quarter-sections.
That is opposed by a group of local landowners that say the project will detract from their neighbouring properties and is uneconomical. Elemental refutes those claims.
This week, regulators denied a request to delay the hearing for a second time by the opposition group.
The hearing will proceed as scheduled over three days at the Heritage Inn in Brooks beginning on the morning of Dec. 3.
Hut 8 buys out partner
A cryptocurrency company with major operations in Medicine Hat has assumed full ownership of a second facility in Drumheller from partner, the Bitfury Group, the company announced Thursday.
The purchase involves ownership of nine data centres provided by Bitfury to the facility that opened in 2017 as a partnership between the two firms.
The cost of this week’s deal is US$7 million, according to Hut 8, which is paying the cost from operating funds.
It adds 16 per cent to Hut 8’s existing operational capacity, which was previously assigned to Bitfury.
“This upgrade allows Hut 8 to take 100 per cent ownership of the Drumheller facility, which will bring further cost savings,” said CEO Andrew Kiguel, the CEO. “This upgrade was funded from Hut 8’s balance sheet, which remains strong after this transaction and prior debt repayments.”