The Town of Hinton has announced a partnership with Epoch Energy to advance Hinton Geothermal; an innovative district energy heating system leveraging heat energy from deep, hot reservoirs in the Hinton area as well as a future goal of geothermal power generation.
Hinton's location is central to oil and gas exploration, well bore infrastructure, and the requisite geology to be repurposed for geothermal energy-an approach that is creative and novel in its vision.
"The opportunity to partner with Alberta-based Epoch Energy ensures the right people are at the table to quickly advance this project," stated Mayor Rob Mackin.
Epoch Energy Development brings together the expertise needed to develop a community district heating system that will serve institutional and commercial buildings across Hinton with the potential to also provide new baseload renewable energy for the region. As well, Epoch will work with local energy producers to create a complete energy story, where local carbon intensity of existing infrastructure can be reduced by including clean energy sources.
Hinton Geothermal will create a competitive advantage for Hinton by providing an affordable and renewable heat source for the community, attracting new investment and diversification, reducing our carbon footprint and supporting regional exploration/production companies through utilizing this 'new' energy potential from existing wells.
"We are experiencing a confluence of circumstance that set the stage for the Hinton geothermal project - a price on carbon that affects municipal heating budgets, low commodity prices that affect balance sheets of energy producers to prompt a look for new ways to get a return on sunk drilling costs, and investment capital that is hungry for a move to clean, green energy projects," stated Lisa Mueller, President and CEO of Epoch Energy Development. "Epoch Energy Development is partnering with Hinton to create a compelling local energy story that puts Albertans back to work and creates a legacy of green economic development."
Moving forward, a feasibility project will be completed to finalize the scope of the district heating facilities, develop a detailed capital and operating cost model, and confirm the economic viability of Hinton Geothermal through a comprehensive financial model.
"We have been exploring the geothermal potential in our immediate area for over a year. Hinton has thousands of oil/gas wells in the immediate vicinity of the town and many of these can provide the geothermal energy potential we need versus having to go the expense of drilling new holes and starting from scratch," Mackin explained.
Hinton Town Council has entered into a Letter of Intent with Epoch Energy and will be advancing efforts to complete the feasibility study for this project. Pre-feasibility work is already underway and meetings with key stakeholders and partners are taking place. Phase one of the pilot project includes heating many Town-owned buildings, the Hinton Training Centre, and a local high school. Future phases will explore expanded commercial, institutional and possible residential use of geothermal heat. Partners in Hinton Geothermal feel there is an opportunity for Hinton to experience further growth due to the availability of long-term predictable fixed rate heat to customers.
"The vision of Hinton Geothermal is in line with the direction of our provincial government," stated Eric Rosendahl, Yellowhead MLA. "I look forward to the involvement of the Hinton Training Centre during the pilot project, and support the exploration of geothermal heat and power, especially through a project as promising as this."
Mayor Rob Mackin Town of Hinton firstname.lastname@example.org 780 740 5606
Lisa Mueller President and CEO Epoch Energy Development email@example.com 403.816.0675
Hinton, Alberta and surrounding area has long been home to oil and gas exploration and activity that have provided employment to our citizens, and economic growth to our community. As well, this work has provided a sense of what lies beneath: The Town of Hinton commissioned a study in partnership with the University of Alberta and Alberta Innovates that sought to determine the volume of energy available through geothermal energy.
There are 4000+ wells drilled below 2,500m within a 70km radius of the Town of Hinton, some of which have bottom-hole temperatures higher than 140 degrees Celsius. Through research to-date and general understanding of the region, Hinton is located in a hotspot of geothermal potential from hot water aquifers in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin.
Hinton is a community of 10,000 centrally located to numerous parks, lakes, trails and stunning recreation spots. Hinton is the regional centre to neighbouring communities with services, amenities, education and healthcare to meet the needs of those living in the West Yellowhead corridor. Hinton's economy includes coal mining, oil and gas, tourism, a pulp and saw mill, as well as forestry research and training. Jasper National Park is 15 minutes to the west of Hinton, and Edmonton is approximately 3 hours to the east.
Epoch Energy Development Inc. is an environmentally responsible energy company established to unlock heat energy in Alberta and Canada. Epoch commercializes geothermal resources in partnership with municipalities, First Nations, resource companies, utilities and food growers.
We produce thermal energy from repurposed well-bores and geothermal development and we recover energy from resource production operations.
We supply thermal energy to district energy systems for homes and buildings, power generation and food production.
Proudly, we are a private Alberta company.
Epoch is a force for change, delivering environmentally friendly and efficient heat and power for sustainable communities and economic growth. Albertans and Canadians returning to work, locally grown organic food and industry diversification will come within our creation of an epoch of renewable earth energy.