On Wednesday, June 25, several EDPR employees led a tour of the 30 MW South Branch wind farm for the staff of the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA).
CanWEA represents Canada's wind energy industry and EDPR NA's Roby Roberts currently serves as the organization's board chair.
In attendance from EDPR were Site Lead Technician John LaBarre, Project Manager Ken Little, Regional Operations Manager Tod Nash, and Project Developer Ryan O'Connor. There was also 15 CanWEA staff members present, including Robert Hornung, who has served as President of the organization since August 2003.
"The siting characteristics of South Branch and how well the wind farm blends with the natural landscape are truly impressive," Hornung said. "We were equally impressed by the care and attention that EDPR has taken in building a high level of enduring community acceptance."
The tour of the wind farm, located near Brinston, Ontario, included stops in the O&M building as well as the inside of the base of a tower and the substation building. During the tour, the CanWEA staff members were broken up into three smaller groups and received information that was tailored to their individual interests. Leading the smaller groups were Nash, who covered technical matters; Little, who discussed permitting/REA; and O'Connor, who talked about landowner and community relations. LaBarre was responsible for leading the tower base and substation walkthroughs and also provided additional information and commentary on O&M requirements and the turbines.
After an informative tour, CanWEA expressed interest in working with EDPR to improve its information packages for farmers. Several CanWEA representatives also said they planned to stop by the upcoming South Branch Kid Wind Day, which will be held on Thursday, July 24, and attended by 150 kids. Additionally, EDPR is working to develop two more projects in the area that will be bid into upcoming requests for proposals (RFPs) in 2015 and 2016.