RC107 JulyAugust2023 - Magazine - Page 25
Prototype testing with the UVic-led Blind Channel off-grid tidal power project is
successfully demonstrating the potential for harnessing tidal currents to power offgrid communities.
A key focus of the Government of Canada’s Budget 2023 is
expanding and transforming Canada’s electricity system.
GETTY IMAGES, UOV, THE INSTITUTE FOR INTEGRATED ENERGY SYSTEMS/UNIVERSITY OF VICTORIA
the industry and supported as they climb the ladder into
A made-in-Canada approach
According to a new report from the Canadian Climate Institute, Canada can compete and succeed without precisely
matching U.S. subsidies and incentives in the Inflation
Reduction Act, by leveraging existing policy strengths and
using limited public funds to mobilize private investment to
fund Canada’s energy transition.
Rather than trying to copy the Inflation Reduction Act,
the Institute’s report—A Made-in-Canada Approach to Drive
Clean Growth—recommends a targeted response, including:
• Orienting public support around fixing market and policy
failures, to avoid over-subsidizing projects that would have
been economically viable without, or with less, government
• Using financial support instruments that optimally share
risks and returns between the Canadian public and private
• Building “exit strategies” for public support.
• Ensuring the Canada Growth Fund’s governance models
combine a clear mandate with political independence and
• Requiring that the Fund’s investment portfolio has a minimum share of projects with Indigenous majority ownership.
“The Inflation Reduction Act set the U.S. economy on a
NEW FUNDING BOOSTS UVIC-LED VISION FOR CLEAN ENERGY SHIFT
The University of Victoria will lead a national, multi-partner research initiative that
will help get Canada to net zero—one community at a time—with thanks to an
$83.6-million investment from the Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF).
The funding for Accelerating Community Energy Transformation (ACET) will support
the work of more than 40 partners from academia, First Nations, private, public, and
It is a “game-changing,” community-centric model that will place Canada at the
forefront of the clean energy transition,” said Lisa Kalynchuk, UVic’s vice-president,
research and innovation.
“Canada has a tremendous opportunity to lead the transition toward renewable
energy-based solutions that respect and leverage local realities. Locally, nationally,
and globally, local community leadership and Indigenous knowledge are necessary
for us to achieve our decarbonization and clean energy goals.”
The seven-year ACET initiative will help Canada reach its net-zero emissions
goal by catalyzing integrated renewable energy systems in Indigenous and remote
communities that rely on diesel, as well as grid-connected communities outside
The communities themselves will define their energy, economic and social needs.
Researchers and industry partners will help identify potential pathways that are most
likely to reach their goals. Together, they will implement changes that benefit health,
environment, and society—and move Canada rapidly toward net zero.
“Net-zero energy systems are much more than just respecting the environment
and generating power. The energy must be harnessed, stored, distributed, and used
to provide the community with the services they have determined they need,” said
Curran Crawford, ACET lead.
New financing models including capturing local economic benefits from
renewable power have the potential to create equitable local economies that are
unburdened by polluting and expensive energy. These technical and economic
innovations must be accompanied by policy and governance structures that will help
realize reconciliation and local self-determination.
JULY/AUGUST 2023 – RENEW CANADA 25