Canada is one of the world’s biggest green energy producers and in some provinces, close to 95 percent of electricity is generated from renewable sources such as hydro and solar power. In fact, reports show that Canada is the second biggest hydro power producer. However, the use of fossil fuels is expected to reach record levels by 2019, which is a worrisome trend to watch. In light of this, it is important to improve energy efficiency and develop and implement new green energy technologies.
Green Energy Sources in Canada
Canada generates about 60 to 66 percent of its electricity from renewable sources, including hydro power. Only countries such as Denmark, Austria, Brazil, New Zealand, and Australia produce more or similar amounts. Provinces and territories such as Quebec, Yukon, Newfoundland and Labrador, British Columba, and Manitoba use hydro power to meet about 90 percent of their electricity demands. Other sources of electricity include bioenergy, wind power, and solar power. Hydro power is the main source of electricity in Manitoba, British Columbia, Quebec, and other provinces. The two main sources of electricity in Manitoba are hydro and wind power. The main source of electricity in Nunavut is diesel fuel. Ontario relies on renewable sources such as biomass energy and solar and wind power. In Saskatchewan, however, coal is the main energy source while Alberta relies on natural gas and oil. Alberta produces more than 57 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in Canada while Saskatchewan generates more than 18 percent of emissions.
Green Industries in Canada
In Canada, green industries focus on green waste, eco-friendly technologies, green products and fuels, sustainable agriculture, and more. The list of producers is long and includes names such as Husky Energy Inc., Grienfield Global Inc., Consolidated Biofuels Ltd, Atlantic Biodisel, and the Atlantic Bioenergy Corporation, to name a few. Major producers of green energy include companies such as Clean Current Power Systems, Pond Technologies, Shark Energy Systems, and others. Pond Technologies, for example, uses an algae growing platform and produces biochemicals, bio lubricants, algae jet fuel, and biodiesel. Biochemicals, for example, can be used for glues, paints, and plastics while bio lubricants are used in different industries, including forestry, gas drilling, and others. Shark Energy Systems uses wastewater to generate thermal energy which can be used for air conditioning and heating. This helps reduce energy costs for end customers and greenhouse gas emissions. The company takes pride in using thermo-mechanical technology which is cost effective and efficient. Clean Current Power Systems Incorporated started the first free-stream tidal power project in Canada. Based in the BC Ecological Reserve, the facility is used to generate electricity from tidal stream power.
Is Canada’s Future Fossil-Free?
This is a difficult question but it is clear that all territories and provinces must make a contribution for this to happen. It is important to develop a long-term strategy to gradually replace fossil fuels with renewable resources and to minimize energy use at the same time. Financing the right projects and developments is the key to freeing Canada from fossil fuels. This involves things like building transit infrastructure to help minimize fossil fuel use. Investing in wind and solar energy projects is also essential. Finally, it is important to educate the general public and raise awareness of climate change and pollution.
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