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Alberta wants renewable energy powering up to 30% of grid by 2030


December 1, 2015
By Renée Francoeur


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December 1, 2015 – Leaders from Alberta’s energy and electricity companies as well as government heads gathered together this week to announce details on a plan to transition the province away from coal to renewable energy.

These “energy leaders expressed a willingness and commitment to working with the Alberta government to ensure that the transition is fair to the companies currently supplying Alberta’s electricity needs, and ensure Alberta is an attractive and competitive market place to invest in modernizing Alberta’s electricity system”, the province’s ministry of energy stated.

“The plan we have put forward enables us to take real action on climate change, protect our electricity market and responsibly transition away from coal to up to 30% renewable energy by 2030”, said Shannon Phillips, minister of environment and parks.

David Erickson, Alberta Electric System Operator (AESO)’s president and CEO, added that the AESO is “confident that by working closely with government and industry, we can reliably implement the transition away from coal.”

As part of Alberta’s climate leadership plan, the government said it has committed to:

• Phase out of emissions from coal generated electricity by 2030.
• Diversify the supply mix by replacing retired coal with at least two-thirds renewable energy sources.
• Appoint an independent facilitator and negotiator to help develop and implement this plan.
• Keep the costs of renewables as low as possible by using market mechanisms, such as auctioning.
• Support workers employed in the coal electricity sector with opportunities to retrain for new jobs in a greener energy economy.
• Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired electricity to zero by 2030, from current emissions of 40 megatonnes annually. That is the equivalent of taking eight million cars off the road, according to the government.