We all now know that SaskPower has announced some major renewable energy targets for 2030. They equate to $3.8-billion of private sector investment in new wind energy + additional in hydro and some in solar.

But what specifically does this wind investment mean for Saskatchewan businesses?

The short answer?  (FYI - all prices are US$)

 

Source: NREL '2014 Cost of Wind Energy Review'. SaskPower 23-Nov press release and SaskWind estimates.

 

OK - not all this money will be spent in-Province.

At the present time Saskatchewan companies can do all the 'Balance of System' and 'Financial' capital expenditures (29 percent total). Indeed Hitachi has a facility in Saskatoon which is can make wind turbine towers. In other words we already have the companies and skills in-province to ensure that 42 percent (US$1.6-billion) of total capital is spent in Saskatchewan.

If we put suitable long-term policies in place - there is no reason why we should not have a blade (i.e. rotor) manufacturing facility in Saskatchewan. Were that to be the case then fully 59 percent (US$2.2-billion), of the $3.8-billion of 2030 expenditure earmarked for new renewables, could be spent right here in Saskatchewan.

 
 

 
 

Very nice. But how did we derive these numbers?


Total wind investment by 2030: US$3.8-billion

 

As we've noted: of SaskPower's '50% renewables by 2030' target, the majority will be wind. Specifically: out of approximately 2,400 megawatts of new renewable capacity around 1,900 (80 percent) will be wind. 

The average installed cost of wind turbines in 2014 was, according to US DOE's 2014 Wind Technologies Market Report, US$1.7-million per installed megawatt. However given the less developed Canadian market and the uncertain policy environment here, that is more likely to translate into US$2-million which implies total investment in wind of US$3.8-billion between now and 2030. 

 

Where is the breakdown from? 

 

The US DOE annually calculates the capital expenditure split between the different categories and sub-categories involved in wind energy development and construction. That analysis is reproduced below.

 

Source: NREL '2014 Cost of Wind Energy Review'