Retail giant Amazon announced today its first renewable energy investment in Canada will be built in Southern Alberta.

Rebecca Nadel, director of Amazon's business renewables centre in Canada said that "Amazon's announcement … is the largest known solar virtual power purchase agreement in Canada."

She continued to say that "This transaction expands Amazon's leadership as a corporate buyer of renewable energy into Canada and is further evidence of the growth and viability of the Canadian renewables market." 

The 80 mega watt solar project is being planned in the County of Newell, east of Calgary and about 10 kilometres southeast of Bassano and just south of the Trans-Canada Highway.

Once complete, it will reportedly produce over 195,000 megawatt-hours (MWh) of renewable energy - enough to power more than 18,000 Canadian homes for a year.

"The company now has 206 renewable energy projects globally, including 71 utility-scale wind and solar projects and 135 solar rooftops on facilities and stores worldwide, which will generate 8.5 GW of electricity production capacity globally. With this latest announcement, Amazon is now the largest corporate purchaser of renewable energy in Europe, with more than 2.5 GW of renewable energy capacity, enough to power more than two million European homes a year," Amazon said.

There was no mention in the release of how many jobs may be created or when construction starts.