Pincher Creek Wind Farm (TransAlta)
Today wind power meets less than 5 per cent of Alberta’s power needs. One barrier to adding significant new wind and solar sources to our electricity grid is storage. Wind and solar power is intermittent — turbines and solar panels only produce power when the wind is blowing and the sun is shining. That poses challenges as renewable energy grows because the North American power grid was designed to draw power from large reliable sources that provide a consistent level of baseload power, like large hydro facilities and coal-fired generating stations. That’s why ERA is supporting renewable storage projects, like this initiative by TransAlta, that will test the world’s most advanced lithium ion batteries made by Elon Musk’s Tesla Energy. TransAlta will install 10 megawatts of Tesla lithium ion batteries at their windfarm in southwest Alberta. This type of technology will support broader adoption of renewable energy by enhancing reliability.