Over the next decade, energy in Canada will see a massive shift from a high dependence on fossil fuels, to only a partial dependence. I speculate this both based on the investments we see clients making, but also because of the external forces that are being implemented.
Fossil fuel extractions and dependence have implication the effect the global climate and environment. Canada has access to many other alternative, clean and renewable energy options including solar, wind, hydro, geothermal and organic conversion? The new carbon taxes in Canada have made these types of energies more viable and as a result money is now being allocated to them.
Everyone understands that energy is integral to our day-to-day lives, the next is to look at the choices available to create a more sustainable future, and to do what we can to support them.
Electricity from Renewable Sources
Wind power; is the second most common renewable energy source in Canada. Prince Edward Island is a leader in wind power development, producing a majority of its electricity with wind turbines. Quebec and Ontario come in a close second.
Wind-powered electricity is created by larger propellers that capture strong winds to drive electric generators. The start-up cost is high, but once installed they require minimal inputs to keep them running.
Industry Challenges: Turbines in colder climates in the prairies require de-icing technology to prevent lower output in the cold months. Technologies in maintenance and improbability of turbines are primed for success.
Hydro; Canada is the third-largest producer of hydroelectricity in the world.
Quebec, Ontario, BC, Manitoba and Newfoundland generate a significant amount of their electricity from hydroelectric generator. Projects throughout Canada, such as BC Hydro, are currently underway to help increase Canada's hydroelectric output.
Industry Challenges: Hydroelectric power relies on heavy water flow to move turbines, which in turn generate electricity. The process involved lots of fast-moving water in order to create the high-pressure water flows and is reliant on geographical parameters.
Solar; The sun has always been a primary source of energy for the planet. Photovoltaic cells are technology that makes up solar panels and are what convert sunlight to electricity. The challenges of solar are shorter daylight hours during winter and cloud cover in coastal regions.
Industry Challenges: The challenges of solar are shorter daylight hours during winter and cloud cover in coastal regions. Snow cover also posses a threat to solar output. These parameters, mixed with the cost of technology have limited the amount of solar panel installations throughout Canada; however, the new carbon tax has helped to level the playing field.