Senate Energy Committee tables study on Energy Use and Supply in the TerritoriesPublished on 17 June 2015 News & Photos by Senator Paul Massicotte
OTTAWA (June 17, 2015) – Today, the Standing Senate Committee on Energy, the Environment and Natural Resources tabled its latest report entitled Powering Canada’s Territories.
The 60-page report examines existing territorial energy systems and identifies obstacles and opportunities facing each territory in making energy affordable, reliable and sustainable for its residents and businesses.
The report outlines five recommendations the committee believes are necessary to improve energy efficiency and conservation, enhance community-based energy solutions, advance energy infrastructure and better coordinate federal resources under a central hub. The Committee believes the federal government can play a pivotal role in helping the territories address their energy challenges while harnessing its energy opportunities for a stronger and more prosperous North.
“We believe energy efficiency and conservation is the single most important method to reduce energy costs in the territories,” said Richard Neufeld, chair of the committee. “Only a strong commitment from our federal, territorial, municipal and aboriginal governments along with dedicated financial and human resources will ensure Canada’s three territories have access to affordable energy for heating and electricity.
“While complex and multi-faceted, the territories’ energy circumstances must be addressed in a concerted way to make energy resources, systems and assets more reliable, accessible and affordable,” added Senator Paul J. Massicotte, deputy chair of the committee.
Summary of Report Recommendations:
- That the federal government develop a strategic plan to actively improve energy efficiency and conservation in the territories.
- That the federal government significantly increase funding to the ecoENERGY for Aboriginal and Northern Communities Program with the objective of reducing the consumption of carbon-intensive fuels, increase energy efficiency and enhancing economic viability.
- That the federal government create a federal and knowledge hub to focus on territorial energy issues and conditions.
- That the federal government assist in the acquisition, upgrading and installation of diesel generating facilities in remote off-grid northern communities.
- That the federal government support infrastructure investment in qualified territorial energy projects.
- During the study that began in March 2014, the Committee benefited from testimony of 42 witnesses, several written submissions and a fact finding trip to the territories where committee members listened to governments, aboriginal community leaders, electricity utilities, businesses and environmental organizations.
Click here to see the infographic concerning the report Powering Canada’s Territories
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