City looking at electric generation expansion

By Charles Lefebvre
May 3, 2019 - 3:53pm Updated: May 3, 2019 - 7:33pm


MEDICINE HAT, AB — The City of Medicine Hat is in the early stages of the process of expanding its newest electric generation facility.

The proposed project, known as Unit 17, would be an additional generation unit built next to Unit 16, located in the city’s northwest.

“The City of Medicine Hat periodically reviews supply adequacy of electricity here, and with expected growth in the near future, there’s a possibility we would have to increase the amount of generation the city produces,” said Joshua Gale

Unit 16 was completed and went online in 2017, and provides an additional 43 megawatts of power to the city’s supply. Gale says the unit was created with potential expansion in mind, and Unit 17 would “basically double” the capacity.

Gale says the proposed expansion will help ensure the city’s electric generation remains stable.

“The city of Medicine Hat is required to ensure that we have adequate electric supply, even in the event of a large generator that we currently have operating, if it was to go offline,” he said. “By adding an additional generator there, it provides further levels of support, in the event of unforeseen outages within the city.”

Gale says Medicine Hat has submitted applications to both Alberta Environment and Parks and the Alberta Utilities Commission, which are required for any expansion.

“To have a brand new electrical generator constructed and installed is about a three year process,” he said. “The first year is primarily regulatory submissions and approvals, followed through with construction and commissioning of the equipment.”

Gale says the city is hoping for approval by the summer, and the projects would be brought to city council to approve construction.

According to the city’s website, the goal is to begin construction in summer 2020, with Unit 17 becoming operational in 2021.

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