Corporate Responsibility Report 2013

Energy Production

Our power generation fleet is well maintained, modern, and focused on three main energy sources: natural gas, coal, and wind. In 2013, we completed construction on our Port Dover and Nanticoke wind project in Ontario, which added 105 megawatts (MW) to our fleet. We also completed the sale of our three New England natural-gas facilities. Capital Power owns more than 2,600 MW of power generation capacity at 14 facilities across North America, and owns 371 MW of capacity through a power purchase agreement. An additional 490 megawatts of owned generation capacity is under construction in Alberta and Ontario.

The data

The data below represents the entire plant – not our financial share of the operation. This includes Genesee 3, co-owned with TransAlta, and Genesee 1 and 2, whose capacity and output is sold under an Alberta Power Purchase Agreement to the Alberta Balancing Pool. Capital Power holds the operating permit for these facilities.

Data from Keephills 3, Joffre, and our Sundance Units 5 and 6 power purchase agreement are not included because we do not hold the operating permits.

Data provided in the below section is for the facilities for which we held the operating permit for as of December 31.

Our net power generation in 2013

  • 81% was from coal generation
  • 5% was from natural gas
  • 14% was from renewables (wind, biomass, tire-derived fuel, and landfill gas)

The net generation from our wind assets has increased by 425% from 2012 to 2013. Since November 2012, Capital Power has invested over $1 billion in three wind projects, increasing our wind nameplate capacity by approximately 1000%.

Our fuel in 2013

Year-over-year variance is primarily due to fuel mixture, the number of operating hours of each facility, the sales (hydro), acquisitions (natural gas) and developments (wind and natural gas) in 2011 and 2012, and the sale of the New England natural-gas facilities in 2013.

  • Coal consumption increased by 3% between 2012 and 2013, mainly due to the length of maintenance outages at our Genesee 3 facility in Alberta in 2012.
  • Natural gas consumption decreased by 87% due to the sale of the New England assets in 2013.
  • Tire-derived fuel consumption increased by 78% due to optimization of our fuel mix at our Roxboro and Southport facilities in North Carolina. This increased consumption of tire-derived fuel resulted in less coal consumption.
  • Landfill gas consumption decreased by 37% due to lower production in 2013.

For information on the production capacity, energy source, location, and ownership interests for Capital Power’s 14 facilities, please see the tables provided in Capital Power’s 2013 Annual Information Form, and the 2013 Annual Report.

The Clover Bar Energy Centre utilizes three highly-efficient natural gas turbines that power up from standstill to full load in 10 minutes, giving Capital Power flexibility to respond to sudden changes in supply and demand.

Energy Consumption (Gigajoules)

2011 2012 2013
Coal 101,776,000 94,917,000 97,696,000
Natural Gas 42,096,000 43,021,000 5,621,000
Biomass 4,514,000 5,952,000 5,996,000
Tire-Derived Fuel 2,030,000 2,279,000 4,050,000
Landfill Gas 360,000 371,000 233,000

Generation from renewable energy

  2011 2012 2013
Generation from renewables - % net generation (MWh) 4% 5% 14%
Generation from renewables - % nameplate capacity (MW) 3% 10% 18%

Net Production by Energy Source

  2011 2012 2013

The conversion of steam (GJ) to an electricity equivalent (MWh equivalent) assumes several ideal conditions, which results in an approximate number. Production statistics differ from other published statistics due to differences in reporting scope.

Coal (MWh) 9,887,000 9,366,000 10,034,000
Natural gas (MWh) 5,375,000 5,468,000 588,000
Hydro (MWh) 139,000 0 0
Biomass (MWh) 279,000 412,000 392,000
Wind (MWh) 102,000 192,000 1,005,000
Tire-derived fuel (MWh) 125,000 157,000 263,000
Landfill Gas (MWh) 32,000 32,000 15,000
Net production (MWh) 15,939,000 15,626,000 12,297,000
Gross production (MWh) 16,949,000 16,610,000 13,461,000
Electricity consumed by station services (MWh) 1,010,000 984,000 1,164,000


Materials used

2011 2012 2013
Coal (tonnes) 5,215,000 4,916,000 5,152,000
Natural Gas (gigajoules) 42,096,000 43,021,000 5,621,000
Biomass (tonnes) 395,000 532,000 576,500
Tire-Derived Fuel (tonnes) 59,000 72,400 125,000
Landfill Gas (gigajoules) 360,000 371,000 233,500

Net generation by energy source (%)

Production (%) includes both electricity and exported steam. Steam production was converted from GJ to MWh using a conversion factor of 3.6 GJ/MWh to allow aggregation. Production statistics differ from other published statistics due to differences in reporting scope.

  2011 2012 2013
Subcritical Coal 41% 41% 51%
Supercritical Coal 21% 19% 31%
Natural gas 34% 35% 5%
Hydro 1% 0% 0%
Biomass 2% 3% 3%
Wind 0.6% 1% 8%
Tire-derived fuel 0.8% 1% 2%
Landfill Gas 0.2% 0.2% 0.1%

Thermal efficiency from fossil-fuel facilities

Genesee 1 & 2 (subcritical coal) 36%
Genesee 3 (supercritical coal) 40%
Island Generation (combined cycle) 46%
Clover Bar Energy Centre (simple cycle) 34%

Measuring the thermal efficiency of a power plant provides a way to benchmark against other power plants. It compares how much energy an operator gets out of a plant to how much energy is put in. Clover Bar Energy Centre is a peaking facility (running only on high demand) and therefore has frequent startups and shutdowns. Base loaded facilities generally have higher efficiencies due to their constant operation.

Discovering Capital Power’s landfill gas facility

Profiled by Green Energy Future TV

In February 2013, Green Energy Future’s host and producer David Dodge visited Capital Power’s 4.8-MW Clover Bar Landfill Gas facility at the City of Edmonton’s Waste Management Centre. Green Energy Futures is an online multimedia series that tells stories of green energy projects and pioneers across Canada.

His mission: to discover how methane is recovered from the landfill and utilized to generate renewable electricity. The result: Episode 33 - Landfill gas: How old garbage can generate electricity.

Landfill gas - created when organic material naturally decomposes in a landfill - creates methane, which is captured and burned to produce electricity. Methane is 21 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, and transforming it into electricity allows it to be used as resource rather than being released into the atmosphere. Although there are 64 landfill gas recovery projects in Canada, Capital Power’s Clover Bar Landfill Gas facility is unique in that it’s the only facility in Alberta that recovers landfill gas and uses it to generate electricity. Commissioned in 2005, the facility produces enough power to supply 4,600 homes annually. The unique facility is also an important source of registered and retired offsets in Alberta, which enables Capital Power to offset a portion of its greenhouse gas emissions.

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