AltaLink, L.P.

AltaLink, L.P.

September 30, 2007 23:46 ET

Altalink, L.P.: Decision to Void Transmission Line Proceedings Puts Reliability at Risk

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Sept. 30, 2007) -

NOT FOR DISSEMINATION IN THE UNITED STATES

Today, the Alberta Energy and Utilities Board (EUB) released its decision to void its Need decision, the related Review and Variance decision the subsequent 500 kV Edmonton and Calgary proposal application. In its decision the EUB stated that the EUB has lost its jurisdiction and that circumstances have accumulated to a reasonable apprehension of bias.

AltaLink, assigned to construct the transmission line between Edmonton and Calgary, responded to the EUB decision.

"We're very disappointed that these procedural issues have overshadowed the critical electricity needs for the more than 1.5 million Albertans who live south of Edmonton," said Scott Thon, President and CEO of AltaLink. "As the company responsible for keeping the lights on for the majority of Albertans, this decision will increase the risk that the transmission system will be unable to keep up with their demand for electricity."

"Today's decision makes it critical that, at a minimum, the Government of Alberta delivers on its promised improved legislation and that a newly constituted Alberta Utilities Commission can act in a timely and thorough manner on what will be their most critical file," Mr. Thon added.

The AESO has determined that the transmission system south of Edmonton will be operating below North American reliability standards by the fall/winter peak of 2009-2010, increasing the possibility of rotating power outages for the more than 1.5 million Albertans living south of Edmonton.

It has been more than 20 years since the system between Edmonton and Calgary has been reinforced and more than three years since this project was launched. The voiding of this project, which was launched in early 2004, now places increased pressure on Alberta's transmission system to meet the demands of Alberta.

"At no time has there been a question of the fact that we need a new line in Alberta. The province's unparalleled economic growth has made the need to reinforce Alberta's transmission system an extremely urgent issue," said Mr. Thon. "Our safety, security and continued economic growth depends on the reliability of our electric system. Without a new line between Edmonton and Calgary soon, we are placing that security at risk."

"Starting today, we will work closely with the AESO in an attempt to identify a temporary solution to partially reduce the risk of outages over Alberta's 2009/2010 winter electricity peak. We will also make it our priority to bring forward a new application that will provide a more permanent solution for the security of electricity supply to Albertans."

AltaLink, Canada's only fully independent transmission provider, is responsible for the maintenance and operation of more than 11,600 kilometres of transmission lines and approximately 260 substations in Alberta. As Alberta's largest supplier of safe and reliable transmission, AltaLink is moving forward to provide a transmission system that will continue to meet the growing needs of Albertans.

Contact Information

  • AltaLink Management Ltd. - Media Relations
    Leigh Clarke
    Senior Vice President, Law & Public Affairs
    (403) 803-1198
    Email: Leigh.Clarke@AltaLink.ca