Posted on May 7, 2021
NOTLEY PROMISES GEOTHERMAL JOBS, HOSPITAL EXPANSION FOR RED DEER ‘ALBERTA’S FUTURE’ CONSULTATION COMES TO CITY MAY 27
RED DEER – Geothermal energy drilling will expand in central Alberta and construction will begin on the Red Deer Regional Hospital expansion under a future NDP government, committed Leader Rachel Notley.
In a speech to the Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce on Friday, Notley spoke about how the city’s unique economic opportunities and affordable quality-of-life mean it is well-positioned to overcome the challenges of COVID-19 and help drive Alberta’s economic growth into the future.
“Red Deer is young, vibrant, and welcoming. The people of this city deserve a strong partner in the province, and a strong plan for the future,” said Notley. “The UCP has taken Red Deer for granted.”
Notley highlighted how her plan for geothermal energy development—‘Picking Up Steam: Geothermal and Alberta’s Energy Future’, released November 2020—will help convert hundreds of inactive oil and gas wells in central Alberta into geothermal wells producing clean energy.
“We can leverage our existing expertise in drilling to create an estimated 10,000 jobs, helping get drillers back to work, many of them right here in central Alberta,” said Notley. “And we can use our experience as a commodity in and of itself by exporting it to other parts of the world who see opportunities in geothermal, but lack something we have here in abundance — talent, expertise, and technology.”
With the need for expanded care options at the Red Deer Regional Hospital becoming more apparent than ever, Notley also pledged to fully-fund and build the expansion under a future NDP government. The UCP promised $100 million for the project, but the recent budget only provided $59-million over three years and only $5 million in 2021. Notley said the city can’t afford to wait three more years.
“I promise you, if I am fortunate enough to be chosen by the people of Alberta in 2023, we will not delay any longer. This hospital and the health care needs of all the people in central Alberta who rely on it will be met. It will be funded and it will be built. You deserve nothing less,” she said.
Alberta’s NDP Caucus will be hosting a consultation session on the future of Red Deer the evening of May 27th. The session will be hosted by Indigenous Affairs Critic and Alberta’s Future Committee Chair Richard Feehan, Agriculture Critic Heather Sweet and Transportation Critic Lorne Dach.
Albertans can register for that session at www.AlbertasFuture.ca