SaskPower has selected Burns & McDonnell as the engineer-procure-construct (EPC) contractor for its new Aspen Power Station. The new natural gas power facility will utilize combined-cycle technology to provide up to 370 megawatts (MW) of  power to roughly 370,000 homes in Saskatchewan, particularly when wind and solar power are not available.

Named after its location within the Aspen Parkland Ecoregion, the new facility will be in the Lanigan and Humboldt area in Saskatchewan. Engineering will begin immediately, with the facility scheduled to be operational by Spring 2028.

“We are proud to again partner with SaskPower on their fourth major generation project as they continue to power Saskatchewan,” said Leslie M. Duke, chair and CEO, Burns & McDonnell. “The energy transition is all about balance. With Aspen, SaskPower is able to reduce their overall emissions footprint, while increasing the viability of renewable generation in the province by using clean-burning natural gas as their transition fuel.”

Rendering of the planned Aspen Power Station. (SaskPower)

“We’ve built some pretty special relationships with the local trades, women-owned and Indigenous firms we’ve worked with on the past projects,” added Jeff Reid, vice president of power for Burns & McDonnell in Canada. “Our mandate is to optimize existing relationships and then go further to expand those relationships on the Aspen project. We want to optimize the use of local suppliers, local labour and women-owned and Indigenous services to help businesses and everyone in the community to benefit.”

Burns & McDonnell served as the EPC contractor for two previous gas generation facilities for SaskPower: the Great Plains Power Station and the Chinook Power Station. Burns & McDonnell also served as the lead engineer for the Queen Elizabeth Generation Station project.

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“Participation from local and Indigenous companies, contractors and workers has been critically important in helping build Great Plains Power Station in Moose Jaw,” said Rupen Pandya, SaskPower president and CEO. “We are committed to achieving the same or a higher level of local and Indigenous support on the Aspen Power Station Project.”

Much like the Chinook and Great Plains power stations, Aspen will feature a Siemens F-class gas turbine and a Siemens steam turbine generator to optimize power output and maximize energy efficiency while reducing the overall emissions footprint.

SaskPower is a provincial Crown Investment Corporation and Saskatchewan’s leading energy supplier. The Aspen Power Station is part of a disciplined, staged approach to replace conventional coal-fired generation that must be fully retired by 2030, supporting greater penetration of renewable generation throughout Saskatchewan. SaskPower plans to buildout up to 3,000 MW of wind and solar capacity by 2035.

Featured image: (L to R) Chief Edwin Ananas, Beardy’s & Okemasis Cree Nation; Brian Gibney, Reeve of RM of Wolverine; Amber Biemans, SaskPower Board of Directors; Rupen Pandya, SaskPower President & CEO; Minister responsible for SaskPower Dustin Duncan; Jeff Reid, VP, Burns & McDonnell Canada; MLA Travis Keisig of Last Mountain-Touchwood; and Jack Gibney, Reeve of RM of Usborne. (SaskPower)

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