Image: Halkirk Wind Energy Operational Monitoring

1 min read

Halkirk Wind Energy Operational Monitoring

Location
Halkirk, AB
Client
Capital Power Corporation
Timeframe
2013 – 2015

Ausenco analyzed the historical and current wildlife data pertaining to the issue and developed a mitigation plan that reduced wildlife mortality by 50%, at no additional cost to the owner.

Overview

The 150MW Halkirk wind farm is situated in Paintearth County, Alberta and became operational in December 2012. The Halkirk Wind project Post-Construction Monitoring Program (PCMP) was developed by Capital Power in consultation with the Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development Fish and Wildlife Division as a condition of the project approval. Following project approval, and the start of operations, Capital Power required support to execute the Halkirk Wind PCMP to undertake mortality monitoring, identify effects not anticipated in the environmental overview report, and design additional mitigation if required.

Approach

We conducted two years of operational monitoring including conducting fatality searches, searcher efficiency, and scavenger removal trials to estimate project-related fatalities. We were involved in the implementation of mitigations to minimize effects on biota, including engagement with regulators to ensure efficacy.

Results

Monitoring results indicated the project did not meet wildlife management performance targets, and there was potential for operational shutdowns to manage the wildlife risks resulting in lost revenue for the owner. Ausenco analyzed the historical and current wildlife data pertaining to the issue and developed a mitigation plan that reduced wildlife mortality by 50%, with no loss of protection. This was achieved by scheduling operational maintenance shutdowns to align with high-risk migratory windows.