02/01/2008 Wind Energy Sets Global Growth Record in 2007
Wind Energy Sets Global Growth Record in 2007
Canada Expects a Record Year for New Installations in 2008
Ottawa, Ontario - As another global record was set in 2007 with the installation of 20,000 MW of new, emission-free wind power, Canada’s total installed capacity grew to 1,846 MW with the addition of 386 MW of new wind energy projects, its 2nd best year ever. Wind energy now produces enough electricity in Canada to meet the needs of 560,000 homes. The North American market experienced the strongest growth globally in 2007, with more than 5,200 MW of new wind energy capacity installed in the United States alone.
Canada currently ranks as the world’s 11th largest nation in terms of installed wind energy capacity. With an anticipated minimum installation of another 700 MW in 2008, representing well over $1.5 billion in investment, Canada is poised to set a new record for annual installed wind energy capacity. These 2008 installations have already begun with the commissioning of Sky Generation’s 10 MW Ravenswood project in January. This project is the first to be constructed under Ontario’s Renewable Energy Standard Offer Program.
“Wind energy must be a key component of any Canadian strategy to address climate change and Canada has still only scratched the surface of its massive wind energy potential,” says Robert Hornung, President, Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA). “Although wind energy is growing rapidly in Canada, other countries continue to view wind energy as a strategic resource and are moving much more quickly to support its deployment. If Canada is to become a ‘global clean energy leader’ and capture the multiple economic and environmental benefits of wind energy, federal and provincial governments must start to “think big” about wind energy and make it a core element of their future energy development strategies.”
Provincial governments are currently seeking to put in place a minimum of 12,000 MW of installed wind energy capacity by 2016. This would meet 5% of Canada’s total electricity demand in that year and result in more than 10,000 annual person years of employment by that date. While this represents rapid growth, countries like Denmark, Germany, Spain, Ireland and Portugal already receive between 5 and 20 percent of their electricity from wind energy and have more aggressive targets in place.
Wind energy produces no air pollution or greenhouse gas emissions. In addition to its environmental benefits, wind energy delivers substantial economic benefits to rural communities through investment and job creation, lease income for landowners, and a new tax base for municipal governments.
To view a map of Canada’s wind farm installations:
CanWEA is a national, not-for-profit, member-based association working on behalf of its more than 300 corporate members to facilitate and promote the responsible and sustainable growth of wind energy in Canada.
Contact: Ulrike Kucera, Media Relations, 613 234-8716 ext. 228