The federal government and Saskatchewan have reached a deal that will see the province shut down most of it’s coal fired power plants by 2030.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made the announcement on Friday, noting the importance of phasing out coal due to the amount of pollution it creates.
“It’s also extremely important that we’re supporting the workers and their families who are in that industry now,” he said Friday. “And the agreement that we’ve come to with Saskatchewan will allow for exactly that.”
This could affect the Shand Power Station near Estevan, now at risk of becoming a stranded asset.
“We’ve known that this change has been in place,” said Environment Minister Dustin Duncan. “For Shand, that means basically 12 years of a stranded asset.”
The province previously argued, albeit unsuccessfully, the facility should be kept open until 2042.
Should the decision be made to move forward to retrofit the facility with carbon capture and sequestration (CCS), it will be able to keep running past 2030, much like Boundary Dam 3, which is likewise outfitted with the technology. Furthermore, Saskatchewan has already indicated it won’t be equipping Boundary Dam 4 & 5 with CCS.
“We’ve known for a couple of years now the performance standard that a coal fired unit has to meet,” said Duncan. “Basically, the federal government has indicated, through regulations, that we have to meet that performance standard. And that is helping to inform the decisions that SaskPower is making to move up to 50% renewables by 2030.”
The agreement will be made official after a 60 day public consultation period ends in February.