Ottawa invests $5 million in proposed geothermal project in Hinton, Alta.

A proposed geothermal project in Hinton received a $5 million boost from the federal government to help finish early engineering and design planning.

On Thursday, Jonathan Wilkinson, natural resources minister, announced the investment that will help bring Novus Earth’s Latitude 53 geothermal project closer to the finish line.

While still undergoing technical feasibility studies, the Alberta-based company intends to construct a geothermal plant providing sustainable heat to community buildings in Hinton and a vertical farming facility using aquaponics to grow fresh produce and seafood.

The funds will come from Natural Resources Canada’s smart renewables and electrification pathways program, a four-year commitment to spend $964 million on reducing greenhouse gas emissions by supporting renewable energy and electrical modernization projects.

“Canada is actively developing cleaner and more reliable electricity supplies,” Wilkinson said in a statement. “That’s why the Government of Canada supports projects like the Latitude 53 Project that seek to explore and modernize geothermal technologies to lower emissions by creating a greener, more connected electrical grid.

“Projects like this will help Canada achieve a net-zero-emitting electricity system by 2035 while meeting our ambitious climate targets,” Wilkinson added.

“We are deeply engaged and passionate about reinventing the way energy is produced and consumed, solving real-world problems with innovative solutions,” said Jeff Messner, Novus Earth Energy’s president.

Hinton is approximately 290 kilometres west of Edmonton.

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