[email protected]

Planning for Resilient Energy Infrastructure in Alberta

the Advancing Community Energy Resilience Primer Report is now available!

The report builds on work QUEST completed with 7 Alberta municipalities, an extensive literature review on the Alberta Utilities Commission (AUC) decisions and interviews completed with 6 utilities. Policy-makers at the municipal and provincial levels will gain a better understanding of the state of energy resilience in Alberta. Recommendations to improve community resilience are included for the Government of Alberta, AUC, at the community level and between utilities and communities.

Planning for Resilient Energy Infrastructure in Alberta is a one year project designed to help Albertan communities to adapt their energy infrastructure to the impact of increasing extreme events.

Communities in Alberta are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, with more frequent and intense floods, wildfires, droughts, and storms damaging energy infrastructure and disrupting energy supply. This project will help communities to adapt their energy infrastructure to the impact of increasing extreme events.

The project will combine cutting-edge research on how new energy technologies support resilient energy systems with on-the-ground, participatory, interactive workshops and mapping exercises engaging multiple community stakeholders, including energy utilities. The resilience workshop and its associated assessment report will help four Alberta communities and their utilities align their planning processes and asset management to increase their energy resilience. 

Key lessons and findings will be shared so other communities and utilities in the province can consider their own energy resilience plans and mitigate negative economic impacts from prolonged power outages and energy supply disruptions due to climate change impacts.

Watch the webinar

On December 15th, 2020, we showcased the results of the research and community level implementation of QUEST’s Planning for Resilient Smart Energy Communities in Alberta project. Alberta’s climate is changing and this presentation discussed its impact on our energy infrastructure, as well as the cost of damage and energy disruption on communities. It also focused on building resilient energy communities in Alberta, including community hazard and adaptation outcomes and trends, as well as recommendations and potential next steps.

Participating Municipalities

The following municipalities have been selected to participate in the Municipalities and Utilities Partnering for Community Resilience Iniative.

Ponoka County

Covering 721,396 acres in central Alberta, Ponoka County embodies the essence of rural Alberta with strong agricultural roots, a commitment to fiscal responsibility and an independent spirit.  Today, the County serves 9,806 residents, providing strong leadership and guiding the municipality through some difficult challenges.

Big Lake County

Big Lakes County, situated in the north, is a welcoming and thriving community. Located just a few hours north of Alberta’s major cities; our residents enjoy the freedom of the great outdoors. With a service area population of 17,440, Big Lakes expands over 13,942 square kilometres and neighbours the Towns of High Prairie and Swan Hills, as well as First Nations and Métis Settlements.

The Town of Black Diamond

Black Diamond is a Southern Alberta town located in the Foothills County that offers many amenities of larger communities. As the Gateway to the Kananaskis Black Diamond offers a diverse and eclectic selection of shops, restaurants, recreation (2 sports arenas) and beautiful pathways, a hospital, hotels and residences, elementary school (K-6th grade), and high school (7th-12th grade).

Black Diamond, a name that reflects our history, culture and strength of coal deposits near the original town site. Although, today little oil or gas remains, our community is recognized as a leader in small town sustainability. We strive to use our resources wisely and lead in innovative ecological practices that create and support our resilient community.

The Town of Raymond

The Town of Raymond, Alberta is a growing community located 20 minutes south east of Lethbridge, Alberta’s 4th largest city. They have great amenities, foster a business-friendly environment and are a welcoming and inclusive community. 

Project Funder

CEC logoThis project is made possible by support from Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC).

Project Partners

Project partners include the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre (MCCAC) and EQUS.

Learn about QUEST’s Advisory Services. QUEST offers Resilience Workshops to communities that are looking to understand how climate risks and vulnerabilities impact our energy systems.

News and Media

QUEST to Work with Four Communities to Help Improve Energy Resilience in Alberta

NAPECA Grant Recipients Announced by Commission for Environmental Cooperation

QUEST Receives Commission for Environmental Cooperation Grant to Help Four Alberta Communities Increase Energy Resilience

Other Resources

QUEST conducts and packages cutting edge applied research to empower practitioners and decision makers with the tools they need to advance Smart Energy Communities. Find out more about our projects:

National Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) Handbook

National Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) Handbook

May 2020 Renewable Natural Gas (RNG) presents a unique opportunity not only to tackle GHG emissions and improve local air quality, but also to advance a circular economy for municipalities. When implemented on a municipal scale, biomethane can also be injected into...

Accelerating Implementation of Renewable Energy

Accelerating Implementation of Renewable Energy

The Accelerating the Implementation of Renewable Energy (AI-RE) protocol is a free online resource for Canadian municipalities. It consists of 5 action items and associated resources on: The roles municipalities can play in renewable energy development How to find and...