December 21, 2017 Read More →

Canada’s Electricity-Generation From Fossil Fuels Drops to 20 Percent

CBC News:

NEB chief economist Shelley Milutinovic said the trend in Canada is that renewable energy sources like wind and solar are replacing coal as Canada moves to eliminate that as a source of electricity by 2030.

Between 2005 and 2016, non-hydroelectric renewables — wind, solar and biomass — grew from 1.5 per cent of total electricity generation in Canada to 7.2 per cent.

During that same period coal fell from 16 per cent to 9.3 per cent as a source of power. Canada intends to eliminate coal as a source of power by 2030 and only four provinces still get any power from the fossil fuel.

The Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development released a review of Canada’s environmental policies this week which gave the country a rough ride for its energy-intensive, high-emitting, resource-based economy, but did point to Canada’s electrical supply as a positive.

Only about 20 per cent of Canada’s electricity comes from fossil fuels now — divided almost equally between coal and natural gas. Nuclear energy accounts for 15 per cent of Canada’s electricity supply.

The rest comes from renewables. Hydro is the big beast in that, responsible for almost 60 per cent of Canada’s power in 2016. While actual hydro power generation has grown about seven per cent in the last decade, other renewables are exploding.

The amount of electricity generated by the wind is 20 times what it was in 2005, and wind as a percentage of total power grew from just 0.2 per cent in 2005 to 4.7 per cent in 2016.

Solar didn’t exist as a source of power for utility companies in Canada a decade ago. By 2016, solar capacity was 2,310 megawatts, almost all of it in Ontario.

Outside of Ontario, solar installations are mostly quite small.

More: Renewable energy growing in Canada but solar installations lagging behind

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