Canadian Report Ignores 99% of Green Heat

An assessment prepared for the Canadian government on the installed capacity of renewable energy sources, ignores more than 99% of the Green Heat facilities in the country.

The analysis, 'Review of Renewable Energy in Canada, 1990 - 2003,' quantifies 321,107 kW of installed wind turbines and 264 kW of solar PV panels, as well as 1,300 kW of thermal capacity from solar thermal and 3,243 kW-th from geothermal heat pumps, which includes ground-coupled systems, air source heat pumps and geothermal generation.

The domestic earth energy industry, through its Earth Energy Society of Canada, has quantified a national capacity of 460,000 to 500,000 kW-th. The largest facility is the recently-commissioned Deep Lake Water Cooling system which will provide 60,000 kW of cooling to 100 office buildings (32 million square feet of building space) in downtown Toronto.

"This is more than just a rounding error," notes EESC, which claims the 36,00 installed heat pumps in Canada reduce GHG emissions by 400,000 tonnes, with virtually no financial assistance by any level of government.

The report was produced for Natural Resources Canada and Environment Canada by the Canadian Industrial Energy End-use Data & Analysis Centre at Simon Fraser University and released last October, but officials from NRCan's renewable energy branch say they know nothing about it and were unable to provide details.

The report was commissioned to provide a "comprehensive database of renewable energy facilities in Canada" with summary information on renewables by technology and scale.

Excluding 72,302,942 kW of conventional hydro, the installed capacity of renewables in Canada was 20,361,033 kW, of which small hydro is 12,064,080 kW and biomass is 7,857,948 kW.

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