Canada to Offer Incentive for Suppliers of Renewable Energy

The federal government will provide a financial incentive to emerging renewable energy distributors “to stimulate sales in residential and small-business markets.”

OTTAWA, Ontario, CA, 2001-11-07 [] A request for proposals is expected to be released by the end of this year or early in 2002, and will be sent to distributors of electricity, according to Richard Godin of Natural Resources Canada. The measure will affect electricity sales only, and is not expected to have any impact on the promotion of renewable energy for thermal heating or cooling. The measure was included in the national action plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Canada has pledged to reduce its emissions by 2012 by 26 percent over 1990 levels, or a total of 200 megatonnes. Godin’s comments were made to the Canadian Wind Energy Association, where it was noted that the federal government is negotiating changes to the Renewable Energy Deployment Initiative to include wind energy. REDI was launched in 1997 to assist solar thermal, earth energy and advanced biomass technologies for space conditioning applications, but the program was amended earlier this year to apply to certain solar PV applications. The Canadian government has pledged Cdn$2 billion to climate change initiatives, and a “significant portion will be aimed at renewable energy,” energy minister Ralph Goodale told the same meeting. The government is “resolute” in its commitment to reduce GHG emissions, which he said would involve sequestration and carbon sinks. “Renewable energy can be one of the vast sources at our disposal,” he explained. “There is a lot of work to be done; the transition doesn’t happen on its own” and requires the active engagement of many players. “Renewable energy can help to make Canada an innovative country,” he explained, by decreasing the country’s reliance on raw resources and increasing its development of an energy source that can be used at home and abroad. The federal government recently agreed to purchase 20 percent of its electricity from emerging renewable energy facilities, which has prompted the development of windfarms in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Prince Edward Island. In the latter province, 75 percent of federal power consumption will come from wind. CanWEA wants 10 MW of electricity in Canada to come from wind turbines by 2010.
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