Survey of Energy Resources 2007
Wind Country Notes
Canada's wind energy capacity has grown significantly during the current decade. By end-2005 Canada had 683 MW installed capacity; by end-2006 it had grown to 1 460 MW from just 138 MW in 2000. Wind generators produced an estimated 1.8 TWh of electricity in 2005.
The federal Government's Wind Power Production Incentive (CDN$ 0.01/kWh) has assisted in the development of wind power generation. It aims to increase wind power to 4 000 MW by 2010. By end-2005 approximately CDN$ 300 million had been allocated for 22 projects, with a total capacity of 920 MW.
Provincial incentives and Renewable Portfolio Standards have also assisted in the development of wind projects. Each Canadian province is planning to increase its wind power capacity. An example of the ambitious programmes for encouraging renewable energy is the Standards Offer Program in Ontario, which provides CDN$ 0.11/kWh for small renewable energy producers. Ontario also has a Renewable Portfolio Standard and aims to generate 5% of its power from renewable energy by 2007 and 10% by 2010. It is expected that up to 80% of this generation will be met through wind power. Saskatchewan has enacted a Green Power Portfolio strategy, stating that all new provincial electricity generation will come from non-GHG emitting sources by 2010. Prince Edward Island (PEI) passed a Renewable Energy Act in 2004 requiring utilities to acquire at least 15% of their electrical power from wind by 2010. Under this Act, there are plans for 59 MW of new wind capacity to be installed in PEI by end-2007. By 2015, Quebec is looking to increase its wind capacity by 4 000 MW, while Manitoba, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia are aiming to add 1 000 MW, 400 MW and 380 MW respectively over the same time period.
According to the Canadian Wind Energy Association, there are 33 projects under development, some of which have signed power purchase agreements and are under construction. Should all of these wind farms be developed, Canada's wind power capacity will increase by a further 2 800 MW. Of this, the majority of the development will take place in Quebec (1 245 MW) and Ontario (955 MW), with other significant contributions in British Columbia (325 MW) and Alberta (134 MW).
Wind-diesel hybrid projects in remote Canadian communities, operating on an isolated grid, demonstrate that wind energy can offset some of the costs associated with transporting diesel fuel to remote sites. The Government of Canada, through the Technology Early Action Measures and Natural Resources Canada, supported Frontier Power Systems in the installation of hybrid wind-diesel systems on the island of Ramea, in Newfoundland. Further to this, there are some systems online in northern communities, including Rankin Inlet and Cambridge Bay in Nunavut and others in the Northwest Territories. There is also a significant rural Canadian, and potentially large international, market for small non-electric wind turbines for pumping water and aerating ponds.