Amazon to Build its First Wind Farm in Canada
Amazon has announced its latest foray into renewable energy in Canada with a new 495 MW wind farm in Vulcan County, Alberta, marking the company’s first wind farm in the country.
This comes alongside the commencement of operations at Amazon Solar Farm Canada – Travers, which is Canada’s largest solar project.
These renewable energy sources, including both solar and wind farms, are set to power Amazon’s various local operations. These include Amazon Web Services (AWS) data centers, as well as Amazon fulfillment centers, sortation centers, and delivery stations. Additionally, they will provide clean power to local communities.
Amazon, now the largest corporate purchaser of renewable energy in Canada according to BloombergNEF, has a total of four renewable energy projects in the country. These projects are projected to generate over 2.3 million megawatt-hours (MWH) of clean energy, enough to power approximately 1.69 million Canadian homes.
Previous investments include a 60 MW solar farm in Newell County, Alberta, and a rooftop solar energy project at an Amazon delivery station in Nisku, Alberta.
“As Amazon moves to powering our operations with 100% renewable energy, we’re proud to support new solar and wind projects in Canada, which will help power our next data center Region in Calgary, Alberta, and provide clean energy to local communities where our customers live and work,” said Nat Sahlstrom, Amazon Web Services head of energy, water, and sustainability, in a statement to iPhone in Canada.
“These projects are also helping create jobs, support local businesses, and boost the local tax base, which are all part of Amazon’s broader commitment to become a more sustainable company,” he added.
The new wind farm, Amazon Wind Farm Canada – Buffalo Plains, located near Lomond, Alberta, is anticipated to create up to 300 jobs during construction, utilizing an estimated 900,000 manhours. The wind farm is being developed by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP).
Amazon Solar Farm Canada – Travers, developed by Greengate Renewables and CIP and owned by Axium, has approximately 1.3 million solar panels and created around 750 jobs during construction.
Renewable energy projects by Amazon are generating an estimated $478 million CAD in local economic investment and contributing $206 million CAD in total gross domestic product (GDP) from 2014 through 2022, says the company. These projects leverage Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), allowing Amazon to buy electricity from future renewable energy projects, facilitating funding and construction without direct costs to local energy users.
Amazon’s goal to power its operations with 100% renewable energy by 2025, advancing its original 2030 commitment, is well underway. There are now 479 wind and solar projects globally, expected to generate more than 71,000 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of clean energy annually, enough to power 6.7 million U.S. homes. As of the end of 2022, 90% of the electricity used in Amazon’s operations came from renewable sources.
Additionally, Amazon’s investment in Canada surpasses $25 billion since 2010, covering infrastructure and employee compensation. The company’s local operations include 25 fulfillment and sortation centers, 34 delivery stations, one AWS Region, and two corporate Tech Hubs in Vancouver and Toronto.