Let’s Talk Energy, a national program committed to encouraging energy literacy in Canada, hosted a Google hangout on October 29 with the Canadian Council on Renewable Electricity. CanCORE is represented by four different renewable energy industry organizations (Wind, Solar, Marine and HydroPower). Each of the industry representatives discussed their technology’s role in the global adoption of clean energy and Canada’s role in deploying these technologies for economic and environmental well-being. We’ve provided a summary of each presentation below.
Canada’s hydroelectricity industry is the third largest producer of hydroelectricity in the world after China and Russia. It is also the number one source of electricity in Canada. John Irving of the Canadian Hydropower Association was excited by the untapped potential of hydro to be a large exporter of clean energy to the United States. Irving said “we export approximately 40 terrawatts of electricity to the United States, and 80% of that is clean renewable hydro power. That displaces half a million tons of CO2 in the US.” Growing this export will not only benefit Canada’s economy but also help the US environmentally.
Canada has jumped from having 330 MW of installed wind capacity to 10,000 MW in just 12 years, becoming the 7th largest wind energy producer in the world. Wind is currently the largest growing energy source in Canada. How, you ask? Rob Hornung from the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) attributes the widespread proliferation of wind energy to cost reductions due to technological improvements. Another advantage of wind is that it is an excellent opportunity to partner with rural communities, where the largest wind farms are often located.
The International Energy Agency predicts that solar will be the dominant electricity source worldwide by 2050. John Gorman, president of Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA) says that, like wind energy, this is largely due to technological innovation. “We have seen a 99% decrease in equipment cost since 30 years ago. In the last 5 years alone the price of solar equipment dropped another 75%”. The unique attribute of solar that it is scalable, from a rooftop system on your home or small business to large scale ground-mount projects in the deserts.
The combination of wave, tidal and river current energies is a large resource for Canada as every province in Canada has rivers and long coastlines. Elisa Obermann of Marine Renewables Canada says that the tidal power of the Bay of Fundy is attracting global attention and investment. There is great potential to draw on local talent and expertise in the construction of marine projects.
The Canadian Council on Renewable Electricity’s mission is to educate and engage Canadians about the opportunity to expand the production and use of renewable electricity across the country. They see great potential for these technologies to work together and make Canada a leader in renewable electricity production.
To learn more about how you can get involved in the shift to 100% renewable energy, attend our “Powering People Forward” event on November 18th.
Header image source: Pixabay user “Byrev”, licensed under CC0.10
Let’s Talk Energy image: Let’s Talk Energy website
Canadian Council on Renewable Electricty image: CanCORE website
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