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The Emerging Market for Renewables in Western Canada

Mar 7, 2018

Smart Energy Communities improve energy efficiency, enhance reliability, cut costs, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Renewable energy, energy efficiency and storage are an integral part of Smart Energy Communities. As policymakers plan for the future of energy supply, it is essential to bring together the voices of many different representatives to ensure that all perspectives are presented and that barriers to implementation can be identified and addressed.

The Alberta and Saskatchewan Renewable Energy Finance Summit which took place in Calgary February 5-6 brought together representatives from across the industry. Local companies met with regional, national and international players to discuss the future of the growing smart energy market. There was a mix of private and public sector panellists sharing their experiences with the Alberta and Saskatchewan energy markets and how this compares to the evolution of the renewable energy industry in other jurisdictions across Canada and globally.

The event was a platform to discuss the challenges and opportunities that have come as a result of the Government of Alberta’s commitment to renewables as part of the regional energy mix. As a result of announcing rounds two and three of the renewable energy procurement framework, there has been a renewed commitment to both wind and solar in Alberta. A number of panels focused on the pricing, which was good news for taxpayers, but has the potential to pose some challenges in raising financing to build out those projects that were successful.

The Government of Saskatchewan announced plans for their renewable and energy efficiency initiatives with details to follow in the coming weeks and months. There was excitement around the opportunities this will provide for developers and engineering and procurement companies to create new jobs to support this new industry.

The Summit also dedicated time on the agenda to focus specifically on the inclusion of First Nations ensuring that their voices are heard and that we have the right people at the table when these resource decisions are being made across both provinces. Particularly interesting were the panel discussions on policy implications for the future of renewables and how the market will need to evolve and grow with the introduction of a capacity market.

Interested in other events in the smart energy marketplace, join us for QUESTtalks: Adaptability – Preparing Your Business for the Changing Energy Market in Calgary Alberta on April 18, 2018.

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