Canada Invests in Smart Grid Technology in Alberta

News release

March 19, 2021                                                          Alberta                                                  Natural Resources Canada                   

The Government of Canada is building a low-emissions energy future to increase our competitiveness, create jobs and support the natural resource sectors. This is more important than ever as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Honourable Jim Carr, Special Representative for the Prairies, on behalf of Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr., today announced a combined investment of over $900,000 for two smart grid projects in Alberta that will enhance the energy grid and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The first investment of $495,000 is for FortisAlberta Inc. to support the Waterton Energy Storage Project by showcasing how using a battery energy storage system and advanced distribution control systems can provide reliable access to the grid with economic and social benefits for the community.

The second investment of $413,250 is for Lethbridge Electric Utility to enhance its distribution network by using Conservation Voltage Reduction software technology in its metering system to conserve energy and reduce demand on the energy grid, providing financial benefits to over 40,000 customers who rely on the network.

Funding for this project was provided by Natural Resources Canada’s Smart Grid Program, which allows utilities to reduce pollution and optimize electricity use while encouraging innovation. It is part of Canada’s more than $180-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program for public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes and Canada’s rural and northern communities.

As outlined in Canada’s strengthened climate plan, A Healthy Environment and a Healthy Economy, Canada is advancing smart renewable energy and grid modernization projects that will enable the clean grid of the future. 


“Funding innovative ideas to further lower emissions, increase competitiveness and modernize our energy grids in Canada is how we get to net zero by 2050.”

Seamus O’Regan Jr.
Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources 

“Using innovation and technology to improve our grid will help decrease the demand on it and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Our government will continue to support projects like this that advance a low-emissions energy future.”

Jim Carr
Member of Parliament for Winnipeg South Centre and Special Representative for the Prairies 

“This project will serve as an enhancement to the reliability of the electricity service for our customers in the somewhat remote community of Waterton in a way that also protects the environmentally sensitive landscape in the area. Thanks in part to the support of Natural Resources Canada, we are able to creatively meet this challenge using a battery energy storage system and a solar photovoltaic (PV) system in a novel microgrid application. We’re excited about the opportunity to leverage new technology to provide reliable, cost-effective service to our customers.”

Todd Dettling, Vice President, Customer Service
FortisAlberta Inc. 

“Investing our capital dollars and our staff’s innovative leadership in data and power systems has allowed us to become the first jurisdiction in Canada to offer the enhanced grid efficiency enabled by conservation voltage reduction (CVR) smart grid technology. Funding from Natural Resources Canada’s Smart Grid Fund has made it possible for us to demonstrate that this technology can reduce electrical energy consumption and greenhouse gases across our entire customer base without having to ask them to change their behaviour.”

Stewart Purkis, P.Eng., Electric Utility Manager
City of Lethbridge 

Associated links


Media Relations
Natural Resources Canada

Ian Cameron
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Natural Resources


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