Energy in Canada

After Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, Canada has the third large crude reserves in the world. However, Canadians still face the energy dilemma along with the rest of the globe. There’s lack of planning on how to put the natural resources of Canada for optimal use.

Tar sand lands are going through extraction process that has a negative effect on the environment. The methods are not sustainable, and the process needs to be revised to reduce or eliminate the negative impact. Alberta Heritage Fund is an example of such processes.

Transmission of renewable energy from remote to urban areas is facing difficulty due to ageing electrical infrastructure. The demand for natural gas is expected to rise by a double amount till 2035. The demand will be composed of use of natural gas to produce local bitumen in oil sands and electricity as well as LNG (liquefied natural gas) for exports. New entrants are required for deregulation of storage services in states like Alberta. A list of energy providers for respective provinces can be obtained from the web. For example, people living in Alberta can visit websites like http://www.albertaenergyproviders.com/, while residents of Ontario check out Ontario energy providers.

A warning has also been issued by International Energy Agency that rising use of fossil energy along with planned policies will lead to severe effects on the climate. According to Megan Leslie, NDP MP (Halifax, N.S.), all the focus is on oil industry and even the investment in green technology is geared towards this particular industry. Other industries are being neglected.

The implementation of solar energy will depend upon technological investment and infrastructure changes. For reducing the harmful effects on the natural environment from traditional electricity production, solar photovoltaic energy will allow for a more sustainable production system that doesn’t compromise the well-being of the society. Solar is still an untapped and an immature area in the country, and by achieving economies of scale, the cost can be taken from within the system. The behavior of ordinary citizens, such as votes for alternative energy, and installation of solar panels, will also play a major role in determining the future of solar energy.

Wind energy has seen an investment of CAD $2.5 billion for giving electricity to 300,000 houses, with ‘per years’ employment provided of 10,500 according to CanWEA. The provinces leading the way in wind energy projects include Nova Scota, British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario. CanWEA also predicts 2013 to be a record year for the wind industry in Canada.

GHG emissions are also a result of rising energy demands, and they’re expected to rise by 1.5 percent per year.

The solution lies in making adequate investments, public engagement and timely decision making. These solutions can help to overcome many challenges and expand the groundwork beyond conventional supply for improvements in energy efficiency.

Regional differences in terms of energy and efficiency need to be considered, along with the changing environment. To replace the aging infrastructure and develop new methodology, a balance will be needed between decision making and public investment. 

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