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Alberta’s renewable energy windfall should benefit consumers, industry: Opposition

Alberta’s New Democrat Opposition is calling for the provincial government to use a nearly $300-million windfall from renewable energy contracts to help ease high consumer power bills and expand the industry.

Figures from the University of Calgary’s School of Public Policy indicate that contracts signed years ago between Alberta and renewable energy companies have netted the province more than $282 million in direct payments and carbon credits that weren’t issued.

That’s because those contracts guaranteed that if power prices exceeded an agreed-to level, the extra money would go to the government.

New Democrat energy and climate critic Nagwan Al-Guneid said that extra money should be used to help low-income Albertans with current high power prices.

Anything left over, she says, could help build renewable energy storage facilities in the province.

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She said her party hasn’t received a clear answer from the governing United Conservative Party on how the money has been spent.

A spokesman from the government wasn’t immediately available on the issue.

— More to come…

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