Power Consulting Advice you can count on! Ask us how!

The principals of ORTECH have been engaged in the power consulting business since 1999 both as developers and consultants.  A distinguishing feature of ORTECH is that it is one of the few power and renewable energy consultants in Ontario that provides both financial and technical advice.  ORTECH has extensive experience with small hydro, onshore wind, energy storage and all categories of solar.  

ORTECH is very familiar with key aspects of Ontario’s electricity market, including the following:

  • Market Participant application process and administrative requirements,
  • Transmission System Code / connection agreements,
  • Distribution System Code / connection agreements,
  • Interactions with MSP companies,
  • Various Non-Utility Generators (“NUG”) contract formats,
  • Various DCR and TMC calculations and adjustment procedures,
  • Levelization account formulas,
  • Complexity of making NUG contracts work within deregulated market rules.

From a renewable energy point of view, ORTECH has much experience in the Ontario electricity market.  ORTECH has assisted many renewable energy developers and traditional/non-traditional energy developers with various OPA RFPs, FIT or NUG contracts. 

·         Electricity procurement programs including:

  • RES RFP 1,
  • RES RFP 2,
  • RESOP,
  • RES RFP 3,
  • LRP 1 and 2, and
  • FIT 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0, 4.0, and 5.0

ORTECH provided cost analysis to the Ministry of Finance, through FTI, regarding an international trade dispute. ORTECH’s role was to review the pricing at two periods and comment on the appropriateness of those pricing levels for FIT contracts.

Current Agency Experience:  During the latest round of renewable energy procurement termed “Large Renewable Procurement 1 (LRP1)”, applicants were required to submit a Site Consideration Form including independent engineer sign off.  ORTECH supported numerous LRP1 applications and developed best practices for preparing or reviewing these forms.  This required a deep understanding of various ministries that would also be involved in a REA.  Some of ORTECH’s more recent agency experience is highlighted in the following:

SunEdison:  Completed the natural heritage, archeological and cultural heritage assessments for three (3) projects submitting bids into the LRP1 process.

Conergy Energy:  Completed the natural heritage, archeological and cultural heritage assessments for three (3) projects submitting bids into the LRP1 process.

5 Other LRP1 Applicants:  As an Independent Engineer, ORTECH reviewed the Site Consideration Form in support of the LRP1 submission process to certify the natural heritage, archeological and cultural heritage assessments for twenty-three (23) projects where completed correctly.  ORTECH’s clients included EDPR NA, PowerStream, EDF Suez, NextEra Energy, and one other confidential client.

 

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Site Identification and Prospecting, done right ! Ask us how!

Developers struggle with identifying land for various renewable energy projects.  There are so many variables: RFP guidelines, land classifications, connection options and permitting risks.  That’s a lot of expertise and effort required to vet just one site.

If you are a developer and you are looking to find new renewable energy project sites or review existing sites,  ORTECH can assist you.  ORTECH approaches these issues using the same internally developed tool. 

Red Flag Analysis:  ORTECH will review your site and determine if there are any issues with bidding or developing your project site.

Greenfield Development:  If you are looking for new sites, ORTECH's tool will identify various land parcels that are acceptable to the FiT 5.0 or LRP 2 rules.

 

 

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Strategic Advice? You can count on! Ask us how!

The principals of ORTECH have been engaged in the renewable energy business since 1999 both as developers and consultants.  A distinguishing feature of ORTECH is that it is one of the few renewable energy firms in Ontario that provides both financial and technical advice.  ORTECH has extensive experience with small hydro, onshore wind, energy storage and all categories of solar.  

New developers entering the Ontario or Canadian market might require an orientation or localization of their knowledge.  ORTECH has developed a one-day workshop to assist in this area for the upcoming Large Renewable Procurement phase 2 in Ontario.  The scope of the workshop is listed below:

ORTECH will facilitate a one-day workshop to develop the following:

  • Overall bidding strategy including but not limited to:
    •     Partnering with other developers,
    •     Re-purposing failed project bids, and
    •     Outline a plan to develop net new sites.
    •     Strategic discussions on development approach related to sites,
      •     Technology,
      •     Multi-Projects versus single project, and
      •     Project size(s).
    •      Locations of interest.
  • ORTECH will demonstrate our GIS tool to illustrate the level of complexity of land development for wind power and solar power facilities.

 

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ORTECH has extensive experience in developing RFP bids for renewable energy projects

ORTECH has prepared, as technical advisor and/or development partner, numerous bid submissions across Canada. Bids require a comprehensive understanding of the technical and financial aspects of the entire development, construction and operation phases. ORTECH has brought this experience to its clients and partners since 1999, successfully bidding, winning and executing renewable energy projects. ORTECH has prepared bids or assisted in bid preparations for the following projects:

  • SunEdison Canada; LRP1 RFP: 140 MW Solar farm(s),
  • Conergy Canada: LRP1 RFP: 70 MW Solar farm(s)
  • Oshawa Hydro:  Energy Storage RFP: IESO and OPA,
  • Xeneca Power:  35 FIT contract applications, 19 awarded
  • Silvercreek Solar: 1 FIT contract application, 1 contract awarded (now built and operational).
  • Misema Generating Station - 3 MW waterpower project (now built and operational)
  • Yellow Falls / Island Falls - 15 MW waterpower project (has won PPA from IESO)
  • Wolfe Island Wind Farm - 99 MW wind park (fully permitted and has won PPA from IESO), later expanded to 198 MW after acquisition by TransAlta.
  • Melancthon Grey Wind Farm - 67.5 MW wind farm (now built and operational)
  • Lakehead Wind Farm - 99 MW wind farm (proposed)
  • Wasdell Falls - 1 MW waterpower project (proposed)

ORTECH can help make the complexity of bid preparation easier. Bid preparation requires the entire project life cycle to be planned, costed and a long-term energy price bid to be calculated while on a severely limited bid budget. Over-bidding means losing the bid and the money spent on bid preparation. Under-bidding means a ‘cursed bid’ where the bid, if won, cannot be executed (resulting in loss of credibility with the counterparty). ORTECH approaches bids in a systematic manner, rigorously assessing key costs and uncertainties such as:

  • CapEx
  • OpEx
  • Revenue & Resource Potential
  • Grid Connection Constraints & Outages
  • Permit, Land & Constructability Risks
  • Cost of funds & Target IRR
  • Pro-Forma Model assumptions & plugs

ORTECH is different from other engineering consultants because we are "Engineers that Speak Finance" who actively manage risk. ORTECH has extensive first-hand experience with project development. We understand the process of development where risk and uncertainty is gradually decreased as projects progress through the development stages. Risks can include contractual risks, logistical risks, funding risks and much more. Together with your legal advisors, we can help the project team make high risk bid decisions by identifying, assessing and managing project risk, ot only at the bid stage, but throughout construction and beyond.  

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ORTECH offers Strategy Advice for System Operator in Canada

ORTECH thinks outside the box.  Most engagements with System Operator comes from new areas. ORTECH excels at looking at new or difficult situations that need analysis and recommendations.  Below is a list of examples that showcase this internal talent.

Manitoba Hydro: The initial engagement was to share business insights on wind energy project financing, economics, risk management and project management. This project lead to further consulting work including Manitoba Hydro retaining ORTECH to estimate the power prices for typical wind farms of various sizes, wind resources and turbine models in 2007.   

ORTECH was then engaged by Manitoba Hydro for the purposes of evaluating the cost of community scale wind facilities for various sizes of small facilities using specified wind turbine generators located in representative communities and operating at average winds speeds typical of those found in the province. The intent is to estimate capital and operating costs and determine the price per MWh that would be necessary for all stakeholders to recover their investment in these projects. 

ORTECH is currently reviewing multiple renewable energy projects sizes and technologies from a financial and economic perspective for Manitoba Hydro’s 2015-2035 planning process.  ORTECH is providing a detailed analysis and summary of wind and solar PV cost for the Manitoba market. The nameplate sizes for both wind and solar include ranges similar to that being considered by YEC. Manitoba Hydro has also requested a northern cost estimate for projects located in North Manitoba. This analysis will be ready for January 2016.

Alberta Electric System Operator:  ORTECH provided consulting services to evaluate and forecast data to better integrate wind power into the electricity grid.  As part of the Alberta Energy System Operator’s (AESO) wind power forecasting pilot project, ORTECH was contracted to provide quantitative analysis services.  Wind and power forecast data was provided by three independent wind forecasting firms.  The analysis consisted of comparing the predicted data against actual meteorological data and real power data for seven existing Alberta wind power facilities and actual meteorological data and derived power data for five future Alberta wind power facilities.

The ORTECH analysis was carried out by examining the available data from each of the forecasters in seven categories, consisting of the entire dataset (All Facilities), Existing Facilities, Future Facilities and four geographic regions.  To define the four regions, the available data for the Existing Facilities and the Future Facilities were distributed geographically into South West (SW) Region, South Central (SC) Region, South East (SE) Region, and a Central Region (CE).

Independent Electricity System Operators:  ORTECH has been working with the IESO since 2011 on the project listed below.

  • Feed-in Tariff Commercial Operation Document Review and Site visits: Contract renewed for three (3) years to complete over 210 audits of existing renewable energy projects (wind, solar, biogas). The objective of the audits is to provide an assessment to the Ontario Power Authority (“OPA”) on compliance with certain key obligations as outlined in the FIT Contract.  This review was based on a technical review of documentation and site visits for a sample number of total FIT Contracts which achieved Commercial Operation during a given year.
  • Technical Consultant for Renewable Generation Technologies in Ontario: ORTECH was commissioned by the OPA to collect and analyze current and forecast cost and performance data for eligible renewable energy technologies under the Ontario Feed-in Tariff Program (the “FIT Program”). The report contained the results of the analysis as it pertains to onshore and offshore wind, solar, waterpower and bio-energy renewable technologies. Each technology was considered in various representative project sizes and site applications. For solar, emerging technology options such as thin film and concentrated solar systems were also examined.
  •  Phase II Audit Compliance by FIT Suppliers:  ORTECH was the lead auditor providing technical review of 30 commissioned FIT contract facilities.
  •   Constrained Built Audit:  ORTECH conducted 84 audits of constrained built MicroFIT facilities. (June 2012-Oct. 2013)

FTI Consulting:  ORTECH provided cost analysis to the Ontario Ministry of Energy, through FTI, a global business consulting firm, regarding an international trade dispute. ORTECH’s role was to review the pricing at two points in time and comment on the appropriateness of those pricing levels for FIT contracts. (March 2012).  These technologies include onshore wind, ground mounted solar and roof top solar with roof top solar in various representative sizes. FTI was to use the examples provided by ORTECH in support of expert testimony given on behalf of the Province of Ontario in response to a complaint made to the World Trade Organization (the “WTO”) concerning the Ontario Feed-in Tariff (“FIT”) Program. 

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