Canada’s biggest oil sands company eyes 240MW of solar PV

Oil sands - sometimes incorrectly referred to as 'tar sands' in Alberta, Canada. Image: Flickr user: Howl Arts Collective.

Canada’s biggest oil sands mining company, Suncor, has put in applications for 240MW of PV projects to regional electric system operator, AESO.

The North American country’s Alberta province features the world’s largest deposits of bitumen in sand, which can be taken either from the surface or, more commonly, mined from underground.

Ranked #1 by Alberta Oil Magazine’s 2015 listings, in an industry which generated total revenues within Canada of US$69.9 billion in 2014, Suncor has submitted system access requests to Alberta Electric System Operator for three 80MW solar facilities. Suncor has also put in applications for 440MW of wind projects.

According to AESO’s records, the Suncor applications are the only project applications for large-scale solar received in the operator’s queue since 2005, besides around 30MW across two projects proposed by renewables developer BluEarth.

Canadian news website National Observer quoted a Suncor spokeswoman, Nicole Fisher, who said that the projects were at the “very preliminary development stage” on Monday.

“Renewable energy is an important part of the global energy mix as we work toward a sustainable energy future,” Fisher added.

The projects will be Suncor’s first solar farms, the company having pulled out of a proposed project with Canadian Solar previously.

Despite the company’s obvious reliance on fossil fuels, Suncor CEO Steve Williams is on record as having acknowledged the need to take action on climate change.  

Read Next

July 20, 2022
PV mounting systems provider Polar Racking has acquired Axsus Solar, adding the Axsus Sol-X single-axis tracker to its product portfolio in the process.
May 30, 2022
The G7 have agreed not to fund any overseas fossil fuel projects by the end of this year at a meeting in Berlin, Germany in which they also doubled down on their commitments to a faster energy transition in light of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
May 18, 2022
The UN secretary-general, António Guterres, has issued a stark warning concerning the “dismal litany of humanity’s failure to tackle climate disruption” in an speech in which he set out “five critical actions to jumpstart the renewable energy transition”.
May 11, 2022
Canadian module manufacturer Heliene has seen unprecedented demand for its modules following the US Department of Commerce’s (DOC) decision to investigate alleged anti-dumping and circumvention (AD/CVD) by solar manufacturers in Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia and Cambodia, which continues to spread chaos across the US solar sector.
PV Tech Premium
April 22, 2022
Having last month utility-scale solar in Sweden, Finnish investor Korkia is eyeing up a portfolio of renewables investments that stretches from Canada to Romania via partnerships with local developers capable of embracing the Lego-like replicability and scalability of solar PV. PV Tech Premium speaks to Mikko Kantero, executive vice president of renewable energy at Korkia, to find out more.
March 29, 2022
Europe can halve the amount of gas in its energy mix and reduce energy costs by €323 billion (US$356 billion) if it rapidly accelerates renewable deployment, according to a new report from energy technology group Wärtsilä.

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Upcoming Webinars
September 7, 2022
15:30 AEST (UTC +10)
Solar Media Events
September 14, 2022
Solar Media Events
October 4, 2022
New York, USA
Solar Media Events
October 11, 2022
Virtual event