Selected highlights from CanREA’s first year of existence
The Canadian Renewable Energy Association (CanREA) launched on July 1, 2020. The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) and the Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA) united to create one voice for this country’s wind energy, solar energy and energy storage industries. It has been a stellar first year for CanREA. And to mark our one-year anniversary, we are looking back. Here are the top 21 highlights from the past 12 months. Thank you to all CanREA’s members, partners, allies and supporters, who work with us to provide solutions for Canada’s energy transition, blazing the path forward to reach net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
Highlight No. 1
As our founding President and CEO, Robert Hornung, said in our press release one year ago: “CanREA will be advocating for investment in wind energy, solar energy and energy storage projects that can deliver both jobs and economic benefits today, as well as the infrastructure that will provide a foundation for significantly more investment in the jobs, economic activity and energy solutions of tomorrow.” Read the press release here.
Highlight No. 2
Launched in our second month of operations, CanREA’s newsletter, “Power Together” is an excellent way to stay informed about new developments in Canada’s wind-energy, solar-energy and energy-storage industry.
CanREA also offers an exclusive, members-only newsletter, called “Moving the Needle,” and “Watt’s On,” our events e-blast. CanREA’s newsletters inform subscribers about new developments and key opportunities in the Canadian markets for renewable energy. Subscribe securely here.
Highlight No. 3.
Corporate Knights magazine publishes “Electrification is key to jumpstarting Canada’s slumping economy,” a joint Op-ed with CanREA and our friends at WaterPower Canada, Marine Renewables Canada, Canadian Electricity Association, Canadian Nuclear Association and Electricity Human Resources Canada. Read it here.
Highlight No. 4
Following extensive advocacy led by CanREA, the Ontario Ministry of Energy announces the launch of a community net-metering pilot project. CanREA applauds this initiative as it envisions the creation of a regulatory framework that would provide Ontarians with an opportunity to support economic recovery through the deployment of distributed solar-energy projects in their communities. Read more here.
Highlight No. 5
CanREA holds its first virtual event, the Renewable Energy Forum. More than 400 participants and leading experts in wind energy, solar energy and energy storage come together for Canada’s premier renewable energy event, including a virtual chat with the Honourable Seamus O’Regan, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources. Learn more here.
Highlight No. 6
Also in November 2020
At a virtual AGM, CanREA announces its first Board of Directors, elected by CanREA members. As leaders of the industry, Board members offer their expertise and knowledge and serve as advocates to promote and harness wind energy, solar energy and energy storage in Canada. The complete list is available on our website, here.
Highlight No. 7
CanREA launches its first membership drive, with a blog post by Wes Johnston, VP of Business Development. CanREA has so far welcomed 103 new members since it launched in July 2020, ending its first year with 303 members and 24 supporters. Read the blog here.
Highlight No. 8
CanREA releases its year-end data, showing that, despite significant challenges posed by the global pandemic, Canada’s wind-energy, solar-energy and energy-storage sectors ended 2020 in a strong position, with a total wind capacity of 13,588 MW, a total solar capacity of approximately 3,000 MW and significant growth in energy storage. These sectors are ready to expand significantly in 2021. Learn more here.
Highlight No. 9
Also in January 2021
CanREA holds the Operations Summit in a virtual format, the largest event in Canada fully dedicated to the operations of wind, solar and energy-storage sites. More than 250 industry movers and shakers attended the two-day cutting-edge event providing information on operating Canada’s innovative renewable-energy sites. Read the recap here.
Highlight No. 10
CanREA hosts a popular webinar on what can be done to enhance opportunities for corporate power purchase agreements for renewable energy throughout Canada, with speakers from Microsoft, RES Canada, BluEarth Renewables and Power Advisory. It was one of 5 unique webinars offered by CanREA this year. Learn more here.
Highlight No. 11
Also in February 2021
CanREA congratulates the Government of Quebec for two initiatives: One, the 200 MW Apuiat wind power project, a partnership with the Innu community of Uashat mak Mani-utenam, le Conseil des Innus Essipit, Hydro-Québec and Boralex (read here); and two, a commitment announced by Hydro-Quebec to launch an RFP for 200 to 500 MW of wind power in 2021 (read here).
Highlight No. 12
CanREA’s President and CEO, Robert Hornung, publishes a blog exploring our vision for 2050, in anticipation of a full CanREA Vision, to be launched in Nov 2021. The series explores how wind energy, solar energy and energy storage, working together, will be at the core of Canada’s energy transition. Read the series here.
Highlight No. 13
CanREA holds the Spring Forward event, bringing together 175 renewable-energy experts from across Canada for a special event focused on recharging Canada’s economy with renewables. Check out the recap, here.
Highlight No. 14
Also in April 2021
Following extensive advocacy led by CanREA, the Government of Nova Scotia introduces legislation lifting the province’s 100 kW net metering cap, committing the province to develop Canada’s first framework for community ownership of net-metered solar PV generation. Read it here.
Highlight No. 15
Also in April 2021
CanREA’s Alberta Caucus celebrates a decision by the Alberta Utilities Commission to update its Rule 007, which governs the application process for power plants, substations, transmission lines, industrial system designations and hydro development. CanREA had advocated for changes that would make the Rule better reflect the reality of rapid technological change within our industry. Read our blog here.
Highlight No. 16
Also in April 2021
CanREA reacts to the new federal budget (read here) and subsequent Earth Day announcement of more aggressive climate targets (read here), stating that Canada’s wind-energy, solar-energy and energy-storage industries are eager to get to work implementing these new commitments.
Highlight No. 17
The Government of Canada announces the launch of the Greener Homes Grant program, a commitment of $2.6 billion over seven years to provide homeowners with grants of up to $5,000 for energy efficiency upgrades, including installing solar PV and battery storage. CanREA led advocacy for the inclusion of solar and storage in this program. Read our statement here.
Highlight No. 18
Also in May 2021
CanREA appoints a new Vice-President, Policy, Regulatory and Government Affairs. Brandy Giannetta will lead CanREA’s policy team in its effort to create new market opportunities in priority jurisdictions. Giannetta has been in a senior policy role with CanWEA (and CanREA) for the past eight years, most recently as senior director for Ontario and Atlantic Canada. Read the news here.
Highlight No. 19
SaskPower announces results of 2021 Wind Energy Procurement. The 200 MW Bekevar Wind Energy Project was awarded to Renewable Energy Systems (RES), a CanREA Champion member, and the Awasis Nehiyawewini Energy Development company, owned by the Cowessess First Nation. Read more here.
Highlight No. 20
Also in June 2021
CanREA welcomes the release of the North American Renewable Integration Study (NARIS), the most comprehensive long-term analysis of power system evolution to date on the North American grid, which concluded that, between now and 2050, solar energy and wind energy are poised to contribute 90-95% of new electricity generation to the grid in both Canada and the United States. Read our statement here.
Highlight No. 21
Also in June 2021
CanREA caps off its first year by releasing a teaser of the Association’s plan for energy storage, the third pillar of CanREA’s work as the voice of Canada’s wind-energy, solar-energy and energy-storage industry. The full Story of Storage will be released in mid-September 2021. Read the blog here.