Canada's wind power sector set to shatter annual growth record
Canada's wind energy industry has already broken its annual growth record in 2005 and is set to shatter it before the year is out, the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) reported recently. As of June 2005, Canada had installed 126 megawatts (MW) of new wind energy capacity, breaking the existing record of 122 MW set in 2004. Close to 200 additional MW of new wind energy capacity will likely be installed in Canada before the end of 2005. Canada currently has 570 MW of installed wind energy capacity, enough to power more than 200,000 homes.
"With Canada's installed wind energy capacity expected to grow by close to 70% this year, 2005 will be remembered as the start of Canada's wind energy boom," said CanWEA president Robert Hornung. "Over the next five years," he added, "federal and provincial government policies and targets are on track to facilitate a ten-fold increase in the size of Canada's wind energy industry."
Projects already installed this year include the Pubnico Point Windfarm in Nova Scotia and the Mont Copper and Mont Miller wind farms in Quebec. Other wind energy projects are either under construction or will begin construction this year in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick.
"In addition to their environmental benefits, wind energy developments are also providing lease income to landowners, tax revenues to municipal governments, and creating investment and jobs in rural communities across
Canada," Hornung pointed out. "For example, three new facilities are currently under construction in Quebec alone to manufacture wind turbine towers and blades and to assemble wind turbine components."
Even with this growth, Canada still lags behind other countries in wind energy development, however. "With Canada's unparalleled wind resource, we can still do more to maximize the environmental, economic and industrial development benefits associated with wind energy," Hornung concluded.
CanWEA's goal is to see 10,000 MW of installed wind energy capacity in place in Canada by 2010. The association represents more than 180 companies involved in Canada's wind energy industry, including wind turbine and component manufacturers, wind energy project developers, electric utilities and service providers to the wind energy industry. More information is available from Léonie Bouvier at CanWEA, 613/598-4658, ext 119, E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, Web site www.canwea.ca.