24th September 2019


Farming fields provide a perfect venue for wind turbines. Photo Credit: CanWEA
Forging forward with renewable energy

Forging forward with renewable energy

Canada is breathing new life into wind energy with ongoing projects in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Quebec and Nova Scotia.
Sponsored by


Robert Hornung

President, Canadian Wind Energy Association


In addition to being one of the most environmentally friendly forms of electricity generation—it produces no air pollution, no water pollution and no toxic or hazardous waste—wind energy also makes good sense from an economic stand-point.  Although, as with any new electricity supply, affordability and cost competitiveness need to be considered.

“There is no fuel cost with wind—once you build a plant you know what the costs will be for its entire life, and the costs continue to come down as we see technological advances.”

Ticking all of the boxes

“There are numerous studies that have demonstrated that wind energy is cost competitive with any other source of new electricity generation, with the exception of natural gas,” explained the President of the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA), Robert Hornung.

“But, there’s a great variability with natural gas prices, they do tend to fluctuate,” he added. “There is no fuel cost with wind—once you build a plant you know what the costs will be for its entire life, and the costs continue to come down as we see technological advances.”

“We are hopeful and optimistic that the government will continue to see a strong role for wind energy going forward.”

An industry on the up

2012 was a big year for wind energy development in Canada. The ongoing development of projects in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Quebec and Nova Scotia saw Canada’s wind energy output grow by almost 20 percent in a single year.

That growth resulted in over $2 billion worth of investment and the creation of thousands of clean energy jobs.  The wind energy industry installed 936 Megawatts (MW) of electricity in 2012, bringing Canada’s total wind energy capacity to 6,200 MW.

Canada expects to reach a total of 12,000 MW of installed capacity by 2016, and CanWEA’s WindVision target of supplying 20 percent of Canada’s electricity from wind energy by 2025 continues to be a realistic possibility.

2012 was a big year for wind energy development in Canada. The ongoing development of projects in Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, British Columbia, Northwest Territories, Quebec and Nova Scotia saw Canada’s wind energy output grow by almost 20 percent in a single year.

Ontario leading the way

Ontario is the biggest wind energy producer in Canada, with an installed capacity of over 2,000 MW, and development in the province isn’t slowing down anytime soon.

“The Ontario Government’s Long Term Energy Plan (LTEP) envisioned 7,500 MW of energy coming online by 2018, but at this point we’re on track for about 5,500,” said Hornung.  “CanWEA is advocating  for commitments to procure another 2,000 MW of wind over the next 4 years, that would allow Ontario to address shortfalls in supply arising from the refurbishment of nuclear plants.”

As energy policy shifts further towards renewable sources, provincial and federal governments have important decisions to make in terms of trying to balance concerns around cost, environmental impact, and economic benefits.

“Wind energy is very favourable in all of those areas,” said Hornung. “We are hopeful and optimistic that the government will continue to see a strong role for wind energy going forward.”


Joe Rosengarten
editorial@mediaplanet.com

comments powered by Disqus
A cleaner energy future

A cleaner energy future

Net-zero solar home, created by team of student engineers, is poised to compete in the prestigious Solar Decathlon.

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER

Ontario s bright energy future

Ontario’s bright energy future

Ontario continues to lead the way in energy innovation and investment. Through an increased understanding of our energy landscape we can ensure a cleaner, more efficient, and prosperous future.

Natural resources putting Canada on the map

Natural resources putting Canada on the map

With the Responsible Resources Development, Canada's government is working to unleash the full potential of its vast supply of natural resources in the most environmentally responsible way.