Prince Edward County could easily become carbon emissions free by 2030, add 3,5018.45 megawatts of carbon free energy at no cost to taxpayers, create life-enhancing local jobs, add tax revenue, and open the County to green energy investment. What’s lacking? Political imagination and leadership.
Merran Smith, Executive Director of Clean Energy Canada, speaks about the provincial government’s CleanBC plan aimed at reducing climate pollution, during an announcement in Vancouver, on December 5, 2018. File photo by The Canadian Press/Darryl Dyck
Canada’s clean-energy sector is growing faster than the economy as a whole and is rivalling some of the more well known industries for jobs, a new report shows.
Clean Energy Canada, a think-tank at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, is releasing a study today it commissioned to try to paint the first real picture of an industry it feels nobody knows much about but that is critically important to the future both in terms of climate change and the economy.
“Other countries actually keep this data and Canada doesn’t,” said executive director Merran Smith.
People talk about the clean-technology sector often but clean energy encompasses more than high-tech firms making hydrogen fuel cells and electric cars, said Smith.
She said clean energy includes everything from the production and transmission of renewable electricity to transit workers and construction workers making buildings more energy-efficient. So a hydroelectric-dam operator, a bus driver, and the person who installs a high efficiency furnace would all be included in Clean Energy Canada’s job count.
All told, the study concluded, nearly 300,000 Canadians were directly employed in clean energy in 2017, nearly 100,000 more than Statistics Canada data said worked in mining, quarrying, and oil-and-gas extraction. There are 7.5 times as many people working in clean energy as in forestry and logging.
Smith said the goal of the report is to show Canadians just how big a piece of the economic pie clean energy represents. MORE