Penticton, and the Okanagan, might be seeing its first green power plant.
Frontenac Energy is presenting a proposal to city council on Tuesday, Aug. 17 about the plant, which would take aluminum products and then break them down.
The facility would take one tonne of aluminum, and about 1,000 litres of water, and turn that into alumina, which can be sold and used in a variety of industrial markets, fuel-cell grade hydrogen and heat that can be used to generate electricity.
The proposal would be to produce one megawatt of power for the city of Penticton from the start, with the ability to scale it up in the future.
An exact site for the plant is not yet part of the presentation, but it would likely be on a property purchased from the city.
In addition to the electricity — which would be sold to the city for 25-years at FortisBC’s off-peak price — the hydrogen could also be used to supplement the natural gas in the city, or to power converted city vehicles.
The hydrogen produced has the potential to offset about 12,000 tonnes of carbon a year, and Frontenac Energy has offered to share a part of the revenue generated from the selling of carbon credits with Penticton.
The new plant would also provide employment for 15 to 20 residents, and Frontenac Energy is considering ways to explore partnering with Okanagan College’s Penticton campus.
The electricity alone could save the city around $165,000 at the current costs for electricity, with the hydrogen saving further costs if the city upgrades its fleet of vehicles in the future.
Public engagement on the power plant is expected to begin in the late summer or the beginning of fall.
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