Clean Power Roadmap for Atlantic Canada Unveils Collective Vision for an Interconnected Power Grid

News release

March 11, 2022                                          Ottawa, Ontario                                  Natural Resources Canada

One of the most effective ways to fight climate change is to power our communities, buildings and homes with clean electricity. Atlantic Canada is already leading the way with a solid path to cleaner forms of non-emitting and renewable energy. Governments across the region have put in place policy measures that have led utilities to make significant investments to move to clean power and interconnect their electricity systems.

Building on this progress, the Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Natural Resources; the Honourable Tim Houston, Premier of Nova Scotia; the Honourable Andrew Furey, Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Honourable Mike Holland, Minister of Natural Resources and Energy Development, Government of New Brunswick, today unveiled a collective Atlantic Canadian vision for an interconnected clean power grid that would serve as the foundation for a competitive, electrified economy across the Atlantic region. This is a shared commitment to keeping our air clean while powering people’s lives with affordable, reliable electricity.

Developed by the federal government with the Atlantic provincial governments and their respective utilities, with input from the Government of Quebec and Hydro-Québec, which participated as observers, the Clean Power Roadmap for Atlantic Canada Final Report explores how we can share Atlantic Canada’s abundant resources to grow and enhance the clean power grid across the provinces during the coming decades. This initiative builds on the Interim Report delivered in October 2020.

The continued leadership of Indigenous Peoples and communities is critical to Atlantic Canada's clean power future. Indigenous peoples will play a key role in transforming Atlantic Canada’s power systems through increased innovation, expertise and environmental stewardship. Developing clean electricity projects through engagement and consultation with Indigenous communities accelerates the path toward reconciliation and ensures that Indigenous communities more directly share in and benefit from energy development.

Key findings from the report include:

  • New electricity generating resources will be needed to meet increasing loads on the system and to replace existing infrastructure; 

  • Electricity demand is expected to increase across the region between 2020 and 2050, and investments will be needed to update existing systems;

  • Clean energy, such as hydro, delivered throughout Atlantic Canada with enhanced electricity transmission could provide a wide array of benefits to the electricity system and help power the energy systems of the future for individual provinces; and,

  • A strengthened Atlantic Loop will be the backbone of the regional grid and could provide Atlantic Canadians with an affordable and reliable supply of clean power underpinned by a regionally integrated, modern electricity system.

Quotes

“Canada and the Atlantic provinces are on a path to a sustainable future. We are taking significant and ambitious action to achieve a net-zero electricity grid by 2035 by increasing the supply of non-emitting and renewable power generation all across Canada. Together, we can power a clean future and a strong, resilient economy..”

The Honourable Jonathan Wilkinson

Minister of Natural Resources 

Government of Canada

“Our government has set clear objectives that will see Canada end its reliance on coal for electricity generation by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050. The key to achieving these targets is enhanced collaboration between all levels of governments. There are clear opportunities for such collaboration between Atlantic provinces, whether it be on the Atlantic Loop or other clean energy initiatives. Our government will continue to be a partner in advancing those projects, which will bring jobs and prosperity to the region.”

The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc

Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure, and Communities.

Government of Canada

“Nova Scotia is a national leader in fighting climate change, and the Province has set the most ambitious greenhouse gas emission reduction goals in the country. Working with our partners across the region to deliver clean, renewable and affordable energy across the Atlantic Provinces is the key to greening our energy grid, providing more choice for consumers and building a clean power network.”

The Honourable Tim Houston
Premier of Nova Scotia 

“This is a significant project that will serve as the foundation for a competitive electrified economy, putting our region on a collective path toward a clean power future. Achieving a more interconnected power grid can benefit Newfoundland and Labrador, and all Canadians.”

The Honourable Andrew Furey

Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador

“Prince Edward Island has ambitious plans to reach net zero by 2040. This collaborative work is a first step toward providing the clean and affordable energy necessary to support the decarbonization transition for Islanders and all Atlantic Canadians. Continued collaboration between the Atlantic provinces, Atlantic energy utilities and the federal government will be necessary to meet carbon reduction goals and to ensure we are on a path to clean and affordable energy for Atlantic Canadians.”

The Honourable Dennis King

Premier of Prince Edward Island

“The Government of New Brunswick is pleased with the collaborative progress to date on making the final transition to a clean electricity system for Atlantic Canada. We are concerned about keeping energy affordable for our most vulnerable citizens and recognize the important role that the federal government will play during the transition to help with the costs of meeting their climate change goals.”

The Honourable Mike Holland

Minister of Natural Resources and Energy Development
Government of New Brunswick

“Our team is 100% committed to helping achieve Canada’s and Nova Scotia’s ambitious 2030 climate goals. Over the past 15 years, Nova Scotia Power has reduced carbon emissions by 34% and the use of coal by 43%, and we are working toward 60% non-emitting energy in 2022. The Atlantic Loop is a critical step to continuing this progress and closing coal fired power units in the province. We look forward to continuing to work with regional utility partners and governments to make our shared clean energy vision a reality.”

Peter Gregg

President and CEO, Nova Scotia Power

“We are very pleased to join our provincial and federal partners on this initiative of great importance to future generations. At NB Power we are proud that approximately 80 percent of our generation is carbon-free. We know more can be done, and look forward to working with our colleagues on the Clean Power Roadmap, to achieve even greater results, collectively.”

Keith Cronkhite
President and CEO, New Brunswick Power

“Maritime Electric is committed to working with all partners to achieve a sustainable energy future for our customers that supports the provincial and federal emission reduction goals. Since the Island was interconnected to the mainland grid in 1977, PEI has benefited from sourcing and supplying non-emitting electricity within the region. Further enhancing and strengthening regional transmission interconnections within and to Atlantic Canada will provide all Atlantic Canadians with broader access to zero-emitting energy resources as we continue our journey toward net zero.”

Jason Roberts
President and CEO, Maritime Electric Company, Limited

Associated links

Contacts

Natural Resources Canada
Media Relations
343-292-6100
NRCan.media.RNCan@nrcan-rncan.gc.ca

Ian Cameron

Director of Communications

Office of the Minister of Natural Resources

613-447-3488

Ian.Cameron@nrcan-rncan.gc.ca   


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