Enerfin Canada is promising to work Brooke-Alvinston council if the company should win a contract for wind energy from the province.
Sebastien Verzeni, director of Enerfin Canada, met with council recently to outline what details they have about their bid to produce power for the province. The company is one of four – including Suncor Energy, NextEra and who are considering projects in the municipality.
Verzeni says Enerfin – a Canadian subsidiary of a Spanish company active in construction and aerospace as well as renewable energy – has been on the ground in the area since April looking for landowners interested in signing wind leases.
“We still have a lot of work to do,” he told councillors. “We have a few more weeks and months to have the work finalized.”
Verzeni says right now the company is looking at building primarily in Brooke-Alvinston and Enniskillen Township. The number of turbines hasn’t been determined yet, but Verzeni says the company can bid for up to a 100 megawatt project. That’s about the same size as the Cedar Point Wind Energy Centre Suncor Energy is building in north Lambton County. It has about 46 industrial turbines.
“We had our first meeting with landowners in April,” he says. “There are lots of landowners who are supporting and signing options…In two or three weeks we will finish the land campaign and that will determine the size of the project.”
Verzeni wouldn’t say exactly how many landowners are interested saying only it was more than two.
Verzeni says the company would hire local contractors to build the turbines creating hundreds of short-term construction jobs. There would also be between six and 10 full-time employees hired to manage the day-to-day operations. “We are there at the beginning for the development of the project…we have our own people do the supervision of the project and then we run the project,” says Verzeni emphasizing the company plans to be part of the community.
“We really see it as a partnership were going to work together for 25 years were going to have much open conversation as we can.”
That includes working with the municipality on a community fund. “we would like to have a discussion on the community fund…with the interested municipalities as well as on road agreements to agree how it is going to happen during construction and guarantee…the roads are going to be kept in good shape.”
Verzeni says that fund could include compensation for landowners who live near the wind turbines but who don’t have a land lease with the company.
“We want to have a transparent project and have people know what’s going on…We want to set up a committee with interested municipalities, county and representative of the landowner,” he says adding there will be a public meeting announcing more firm details of the proposed project in July.
While councillors were interested in what the company might offer by way of compensation for the project, there seemed to be little support around the table with councillors reminding Enerfin representatives Brooke-Alvinston has declared itself an unwilling host.
Meantime, Verzeni says it hopes to have “further” meetings with Enniskillen representatives about the project as well. Verzeni tells The Independent company officials stopped in at the municipal office recently to introduce themselves however they have not had a formal meeting. Enniskillen Township is on record as saying it would not meet with any wind company for fear it might be seen as support of a project.
Enerfin representatives also talked with officials in Dawn-Euphemia only to tell them the project will likely be concentrated in Brooke-Alvinston and Enniskillen.