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Blackspring Ridge Wind Power Project

Building wind turbines in dinosaur country

  • 166

    Turbines

  • 1.8

    Megawatt/Turbine

  • 300

    Megawatts

  • Carmangay, Alberta

    Carmangay, Alberta

Stantec contributed to excavation and preservation efforts on a key record of Alberta’s ancient past

How do you build 166 wind turbines in southern Alberta’s dinosaur country? Stantec assisted every step of the way.

We reviewed initial plans, determined the areas of sensitivity and completed the initial field surveys.  Working with the engineers, client and regulators, we came up with a plan to minimize impacts. Regulatory approval was received, conditional on having a palaeontologist onsite for sensitive areas that could not be avoided.

Stantec’s palaeontologists were onsite for excavation of 17 of the turbine foundations. Fossil sites were found at 9 of these excavations, which included dinosaur bones, fossil plant horizons and microfossil sites in shellbeds containing small bones, teeth and scales from dinosaurs, turtles, crocodiles and fish. The sites were salvaged quickly and effectively, allowing construction to continue while preserving the nonrenewable record of Alberta’s ancient past. All fossils are housed at the Royal Tyrrell Museum of Palaeontology, who have showcased the project as an example of industrial development leading to important fossil discoveries.

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