AUC Releases Inquiry Module A Report as Provincial Electricity System Policy Changes Unfold

March 14, 2024

The AUC’s report on Module A of our renewables inquiry was released today the latest in a series of recent developments centred on government policy changes around Alberta’s electricity system. The report can be found here.

The report, delivered to Minister of Affordability and Utilities Nathan Neudorf in January, provides summaries of submissions and observations related to development on specific types or classes of agricultural or environmental land, the impact of power plant development on Alberta’s pristine viewscapes, reclamation security requirements for power plants, development on Crown lands, and the role of municipal governments in the development and review of power plant applications.

The report also provides the AUC’s commitments to changes to its own practices and procedures in several areas. These include:

  • Municipal participation rights will be automatically granted and municipalities will be eligible to request cost recovery for participation.
  • Undertake a review of Rule 007 related to municipal submission requirements and clarify consultation requirements.
  • Explore requirements for proponents to provide soil field verification earlier in the application process.
  • Review Rule 007 requirements regarding proponent commitments in relation to reclamation and security funding obligations.
  • Enhance the existing visual impact assessment requirements within Rule 007 to include a more structured visual impact assessment methodology within the AUC application review process.

The AUC received and reviewed hundreds of written and oral submissions from municipalities, First Nations, Métis communities, investors, industry associations and the general public.​ The AUC thanks all stakeholders who participated in this proceeding and shared their expertise.

The AUC will continue to work with the provincial government and other stakeholders to further deliver on policy changes as announced by the government following the inquiry.

Electricity system policy changes announced at IPPSA

In a speech Monday to the annual conference of the Independent Power Producers Society of Alberta (IPPSA), Minister Neudorf shared details of the Alberta government’s plans to make the province’s electricity system more affordable, reliable and sustainable.

On Monday, March 11, the Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO) and the Market Surveillance Administrator (MSA) each released key reports developed at the direction of the Alberta government. The AESO’s report recommended a restructured energy market; the MSA’s report studied the impact of economic withholding, whereby generators withhold generation from the market to optimize the price they ultimately receive. The AESO’s report can be found here, and the MSA’s report can be found here.

AUC Chair Carolyn Dahl Rees also presented to the conference and provided a brief update on the progress of the AUC’s inquiry, the results of its net-zero study on Alberta’s distribution system and the AUC’s process steps going forward. That presentation can be found here.


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