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Michael Knell

Ikea Canada buys Alberta wind farm

BURLINGTON, Ontario - Home furnishings giant Ikea Canada has purchased a 46-megawatt wind farm in Pincher Creek, Alberta, making it one of the largest green energy producers in Canada.
     The 20-turbine wind farm will be the largest owned by a Canadian retailer and is expected to generate 161 gigawatt hours each year, which the retailer said is more than double the total energy consumption of its 12 stores in the country.
    Wind and solar company Mainstream Renewable Power is constructing the facility and will operate it. It is expected to be fully operational in the autumn of 2014, delivering its power to Alberta's energy grid.
    "Ikea Canada's investment in renewable energy is a win-win-win. We are able to support the transition to a low-carbon future, reduce our energy and operating costs, and pass those benefits on to our customers by continuing to offer high quality home furnishings at low prices," Ikea Canada President Kerri Molinaro said in a statement. "This wind farm in Alberta, along with existing solar installations at three of our Ontario stores, is a significant step to achieving Ikea's global ambition to be energy independent by 2020, producing more renewable energy than we consume."
     The company said the wind farm's anticipated annual output is equal to the electricity consumption of 32 Ikea stores. It represents about 60% of Ikea's electricity consumption in North America or about 8% of its consumption worldwide. It's also equal to the electricity consumption of 13,500 average Canadian households.
    Sweden-based Ikea has now committed to own 157 wind turbines worldwide and has installed more than 500,000 solar panels on its buildings in nine countries.

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