2/3rds of Canada's Hydro now comes from renewables

tay

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Two-thirds of Canada's electricity supply now comes from renewable sources such as hydro and wind power, the National Energy Board said in a report released Tuesday.

Renewable energy production jumped 17 per cent between 2005 and 2015. The portion of all electricity in Canada generated by renewables is now 66 per cent, up from 60 per cent a decade earlier.

"I think people don't understand just how much of our generation is the renewables," said NEB chief economist Shelley Milutinovic. "Probably very few people would know Canada produces the second most hydro in the world."

In 2015, China produced 29 per cent of the world's hydroelectric power, followed by Canada at 10 per cent.

In terms of all renewable energy, Canada ranks fourth in production, behind China, the United States and Brazil.

Hydroelectricity accounts for the majority of renewable electricity, with 60 per cent of all electricity in Canada coming from hydro. Wind power accounted for 4.4 per cent, biomass power was 1.9 per cent and solar power was 0.5 per cent.

Biomass power comes from burning organic waste such as wood pellets or methane gas produced by landfills.

Non-renewable energy accounted for the rest, with 16 per cent coming from nuclear power, about 10 per cent from coal and nine per cent from natural gas.

Wind power saw the biggest growth in the decade. In 2005 Canada produced less than 2,000 gigawatt hours of wind power, which accounted for just 0.5 per cent of all power. In 2015, it produced 20 times as much, more than 28,500 gigawatt hours, which amounted to 4.4 per cent of power generation.

A gigawatt hour of power is the equivalent of one million kilowatt hours. A kilowatt hour of power is the amount used to burn a 100 watt light bulb for 10 hours.

Canada is the seventh-largest producer of wind power in the world.

In 2005, Canada produced almost no solar power at all. In 2015 it produced more than 3,000 gigawatt hours. Ninety-eight per cent of all Canadian solar production is in Ontario, where financial incentives drove the installation of new solar power plants.

In 2015, Canada installed 600 megawatts of new solar capacity, the 10th largest increase in solar installations in the world. China, however, added 15,200 megawatts.

The cost of solar production is the main barrier to new installations.

Chris Barrington-Leigh, a professor at McGill University's School of Environment, has done an analysis of the potential for growth in renewable energy production in Canada, said 2015 was a record year for new installations of renewable energy around the world.

He called Canada's renewable growth "a good start" but said the aim is to get to 100 per cent.

The report notes the main barriers to expanding renewable energy is concern about the price for consumers, as well as reliability.

Two thirds of electricity in Canada now comes from renewable energy | Metro News
 

captain morgan

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The energy produced from renewable sources, particularly wind and solar require back-up sources to accommodate the minimum base load to support the unpredictability of the aforementioned.

.. Casts a bit of a pall onto the whole issue
 

taxslave

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damngrumpy

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When we make simple blanket statements dealing with complex issues we create
more problems in terms of credibility. Yes alternative sources are renewable but
in some cases they are supported by alternative energy sources and that is almost
whispered when it should be noted and if they are going to one hundred percent
how do we address that?
I am all for alternatives but we have to acknowledge all the facts
 

B00Mer

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The energy produced from renewable sources, particularly wind and solar require back-up sources to accommodate the minimum base load to support the unpredictability of the aforementioned.

.. Casts a bit of a pall onto the whole issue

Here's a cool Solar Power Plant that continues to create electricity after the sun goes down.. or days without the sun.

Molten salt is stored at 1050⁰F (566⁰C) until electricity is needed – day or night, whether or not the sun is shining and the Heat loss is only 1⁰F per day.

Molten Salt Energy Storage
 

captain morgan

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Here's a cool Solar Power Plant that continues to create electricity after the sun goes down.. or days without the sun.

Molten salt is stored at 1050⁰F (566⁰C) until electricity is needed – day or night, whether or not the sun is shining and the Heat loss is only 1⁰F per day.

Molten Salt Energy Storage

Not really a solar power plant but interesting idea (although I wouldn't want to be within a hundred miles of one)

Why does it "cast a pall?"

Redundancy.

That base load capacity will still require a coal/diesel or gas source of supply to confirm the minimum required supplied by the renewable source.

Until the tech or storage tech is developed, the renewable tech (at present) is not considered a reliable resource.

Is that not analogous to saying that the fact that hospitals and other critical infrastructure have back-up generators for power outages "casts a pall" over the electricity distribution grid?

That's not an applicable analogy... What is a more direct analogy is that the decision was made to have a General Electric mfg generator as back up to a Siemens generator 'cause the Siemens generators are unreliable
 

Jinentonix

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Why does it "cast a pall?" Is that not analogous to saying that the fact that hospitals and other critical infrastructure have back-up generators for power outages "casts a pall" over the electricity distribution grid?
Think of it like the gas mileage in a car. When you have power generation that relies on the vagaries of weather, any back-up generation will be constantly cranked up and down to match increases and drops in that weather driven generation.
If we go back to the car analogy, what gives you better gas mileage and creates less pollution, driving at a fairly constant speed, or starting and stopping, speeding up and slowing down?