Minister Guilbeault kicks off in-person engagement on the future of clean, offshore wind power in Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia

News release

August 16, 2022 – St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador

Harnessing the power of wind can help deliver clean, affordable electricity to our homes and businesses, create jobs and local economic growth, and fight climate change for generations to come. Now is the time to secure that strong, healthy future for Canadians.

Atlantic Canada, particularly offshore, has some of the best wind resources in North America and the Government of Canada is committed to helping make Atlantic Canada a world leader in the offshore renewables sector.

This week, the Minister of Environment and Climate Change, the Honourable Steven Guilbeault, is visiting Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia to kick off in-person discussions on the planning and design of the regional assessment of offshore wind development, first announced earlier this spring. This assessment will help inform future planning and decision-making around offshore wind development in these provinces. The Minister will meet with Indigenous, environmental, fishing, academic, and industry organizations in St. John’s, NL, on August 16, and then in Dartmouth, NS, on August 18, as part of his four-day trip to Atlantic Canada.

The valuable input gathered by the Minister during these discussions will support the ongoing preparation of the draft agreement(s) and associated terms of reference for the regional assessment. Developed by the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada and its provincial partners, the draft agreement will set out the goal, objectives, geographic boundaries, and planned outcomes of the regional assessment, as well as key aspects of its governance and administration.

The regional assessment will allow for early analysis of, and discussions around, future wind development in NL and NS areas and its potential environmental, health, social, and economic effects and benefits. This will help inform future planning and decision-making, including the eventual impact assessments of wind projects once proposed.

If you wish to add your name to the email distribution list to get updates about the regional assessment, please contact OffshoreWind-EolienneExtracotiere@iaac-aeic.gc.ca.

Quotes

“Wind power is clean, it creates jobs, and it will be key to delivering affordable, reliable power to homes across the Atlantic. Working in close collaboration with our provincial partners, we are moving quickly to usher in a new era of wind development in Atlantic Canada. This regional assessment will improve the effectiveness and efficiency of future federal impact assessments for offshore wind energy projects in Newfoundland and Labrador and Nova Scotia.”

– The Honourable Steven Guilbeault, Minister of Environment and Climate Change

“Blessed with strong winds and an expansive coastline, there are huge economic opportunities for both Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador to develop their wind energy capacity. We want to give investors the certainty they need to get projects under way, as soon as possible.”

– The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources

Quick facts

  • Regional assessments are studies conducted in areas of existing projects or anticipated development to inform planning and management of cumulative effects and inform future project impact assessments. They are a key part of the implementation framework for the federal Impact Assessment Act.

  • The public and Indigenous groups will have multiple opportunities to comment and participate in engagement activities during the planning and future conduct of the regional assessment. As a future step in the process, the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada expects to hold a comment period on the draft agreement(s) and associated terms of reference early this fall.

  • On July 5, 2022, the Impact Assessment Agency of Canada announced the availability of funding to help the public and Indigenous groups to participate in these activities.

  • Another key step towards the development of offshore wind in both provinces was the announcement made earlier this year by Canada, NL and NS of their intention to expand the mandate of the existing offshore petroleum boards to include the regulation of offshore wind. The revised mandate of the boards will also help create a predictable and streamlined regulatory environment and promote investor confidence in the deployment of offshore renewable energy projects, while still ensuring that regulatory reviews are rigorous and effective.

  • The Government of Canada has committed to a net-zero electricity grid by 2035. Using clean electricity for transportation, to heat buildings, and to power an increasing number of industrial activities is key to achieving a net-zero emission economy by 2050. 

Associated links

Contacts

Kaitlin Power
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Environment and Climate Change
819-230-1557
Kaitlin.Power@ec.gc.ca

Media Relations
Environment and Climate Change Canada
819-938-3338 or 1-844-836-7799 (toll-free)
media@ec.gc.ca

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Twitter page

Environment and Climate Change Canada’s Facebook page

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