Renewable Energy, Robust Economy
Insight Supporting energy innovation is part of Ontario’s economic plan to create jobs for today and tomorrow.
Ontario has made great advances in modernizing its electricity system. Since 2003, the province has brought enough renewable energy online to power well over one million homes. By 2025, the amount of wind, solar, bioenergy, and hydroelectric generating capacity online will represent about half of Ontario’s installed capacity.
Where some see a trade-off between sustainability initiatives and the bottom line, Ontario sees a foundation for future growth and prosperity.
Ontario has introduced cleaner generation, strengthened the transmission system and built a smarter distribution system, while establishing the province as a world leader in the development of clean technology.
As we look ahead, we are well positioned to capitalize on energy innovation, turning it into an economic driver as we tap into international markets.
“By 2025, the amount of wind, solar, bioenergy, and hydroelectric generating capacity online will represent about half of Ontario’s installed capacity.”
Canadian energy innovation summit
Ontario’s global potential was on display in late February at the Canadian Energy Innovation Summit. The summit brought together Canada’s energy and innovation leaders to collaborate on technology and economic development strategies.
The summit helped forge new partnerships that will help Ontario innovators develop new products and services. This will help create new companies and jobs. It also helped foster three important initiatives: the Canadian Energy Strategy, the Advanced Energy Centre and the Energy Apps for Ontario Challenge.
Canadian energy strategy
The Canadian Energy Strategy was initially raised in 2007 by the Council of the Federation. Its premise was that Canada’s provinces and territories play an important role in developing the country as a global leader in energy development, knowledge and technology.
Ontario supports the development of a Canadian energy strategy. The province is actively participating in the Canadian Energy Strategy working group.
The Canadian Energy Innovation Summit helped inform the strategy. Now that the summit is over, Ontario continues to work with its provincial partners on this initiative, leading up to the submission of a proposed Canadian Energy Strategy later this year.
Advanced energy centre
In one of the highlights of the energy summit, Premier Wynne announced the creation of the Advanced Energy Centre. This partnership involving the Ontario Ministry of Energy, MaRS and the private sector will showcase Ontario’s clean technology expertise to the world, capitalizing on international opportunities and growing Ontario companies and jobs. Capgemini, Siemens and Hydro One have already signed up as partners.
Green button and the energy apps for Ontario challenge
MaRS and the Advanced Energy Centre will also support initiatives like Ontario’s Green Button, a program launched by the Ministry of Energy and MaRS that gives consumers the opportunity to access and connect their smart meter data to software applications.
The energy summit revealed the next step in the Green Button program, with the announcement of the winners of the Energy Apps for Ontario Challenge. The challenge offered $50,000 for the best new apps developed to help consumers access and use their smart meter data. The creative, tech-savvy winners are developing tools to give users greater control while helping Ontario extend its leadership in innovative smart grid technology.
And because Ontario adopted the North American Green Button standard, apps built for the challenge could be used by the millions of customers in the United States who have access to Green Button, further positioning Ontario as leaders in the global energy IT industry.
Ontario’s commitment to clean energy has already contributed to the creation of more than 31,000 jobs and attracted billions of dollars in investment, while adding new clean sources of energy to the supply mix.
Just some of the ways Ontario is investing in people, investing in infrastructure and supporting a strong business climate.