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Ed Stelmach joins alternative power company board

Ed Stelmach speaks to the Rotary Club in Edmonton on Jan. 31, 2011, a week after announcing he was stepping down as Alberta premier.

John Ulan/John Ulan/The Canadian Press

Ed Stelmach has a new job.

Alberta's former premier will join Genalta Power Inc.'s  board July 18. The company converts waste heat, gas, and pressure into power, giving it green credentials. Enbridge Inc. owns 24 per cent of Genalta, and the rest is privately held. Genalta employs 25 people.

"[I] look forward to contributing in my areas of expertise and experience," Mr. Stelmach said in a statement released by the power company. "Capturing and converting waste energy into something of benefit is something I personally believe in and support."

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Calgary-based Genalta works with industrial partners such as oil and gas companies. For example, it captures waste heat off turbines at oil projects an turns it into electricity. While its revenue is nominal now, its first power plant will open in Peace River this week, and will produce enough electricity to power half the town, said Graham Illingworth, Genalta's chief executive. About 6,000 people live in this northwestern Alberta town, which is located near major bitumen projects.

Genalta plans to flip the switch on another plant in Whitecourt in July, working with a gas processing facility. A third effort in Olds is scheduled for October, and a project in Rocky Mountain House is planned for next year, he said.

Mr. Stelmach, a farmer-turned-politician, and Genalta did not have a previous relationship, Mr. Illingworth said in an interview. Mr. Stelmach, in the statement, said he views the company as an "Alberta success story."

"Meeting the growing demand for energy and maintaining our natural environment are extremely important goals both here in Alberta and internationally," Mr. Stelmach said.

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About the Author

Carrie Tait joined the Globe in January, 2011, mainly reporting on energy from the Calgary bureau. Previously, she spent six years working for the National Post in both Calgary and Toronto. She has a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Western Ontario and a bachelor’s degree in political studies from the University of Saskatchewan. More


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