Alberta Sets Out Energy Efficiency Vision

Courtesy of Alberta Energy. View original article here.

A new energy efficiency report gives the province a road map for creating jobs, diversifying the economy and saving Albertans money.

The new report points to programs like small-scale solar and greater use of energy-saving appliances as ways to improve the lives of Albertans. Alberta now has a long-term energy-efficiency vision after years of being the only province in Canada without one.

Energy efficiency programs will create jobs in construction and energy services and grow future-ready industries such as solar generation. Revenue from the carbon levy will provide the funds for rebates and incentives for families and communities through energy-saving appliances, solar panels and retrofits of homes and buildings.

“As Albertans, we pride ourselves on being energy leaders. When it comes to energy efficiency, we should always be leading. That’s what our government has set out to do.”

Shannon Phillips, Minister of Environment and Parks and Minister Responsible for the Climate Change Office

Individual Albertans, municipalities, non-profit groups, businesses and First Nations all provided input into the report.

The report’s recommendations around small-scale solar and micro-generation are well on the way to implementation. The government has already earmarked $11.5 million towards solar programming for public schools and Indigenous communities. The government is also exploring the possibility of supporting a solar farm to power half of its operations.

Three energy efficiency programs have already been announced:

  • Residential No-Cost Energy Savings Program offers direct, no-charge installation of energy efficiency products to residences (homeowners and tenants), including assessing household lighting, water and heating components and installing energy-saving products.
  • Residential Retail Products Program offers rebates to residential customers at retail outlets around the province. The initial focus is on lighting, insulation and appliances. Consumer electronics, water-heating products, and other options will be offered in subsequent campaigns.
  • Business, Non-Profit and Institutional Energy Savings Program offers incentives for high-efficiency products from a comprehensive list, initially using mail-in rebates for the purchase and installation of electric and gas-based products such as lighting, heating and cooling systems, and hot water systems.

“With the release of this report, and early programming from the new agency imminent, we may safely conclude that Alberta is set to establish international leadership in transforming its economy around principles of energy efficiency and innovation. This means financial savings for Albertans and Alberta institutions, the creation of thousands of green jobs, and the opportunity for Alberta to turn energy efficiency and community-scale renewable energy development into sources of competitive advantage for the province.”

Dr. David Wheeler, Chair, Energy Efficiency Advisory Panel

“With the advice of the expert panel, Energy Efficiency Alberta is well-positioned to launch exciting, new energy efficiency programs for Albertans that will help us all save energy and money and make Alberta more competitive.”

David Dodge, Chair, Energy Efficiency Alberta

“Programs to encourage energy efficiency significantly educate homebuyers on the importance in choosing an efficient home. Energy efficiency programs not only benefit home owners, but help Avalon reach and exceed 36 per cent energy usage savings every month.”

Ryan Scott, President and CEO of Avalon Master Builder