Ottawa, ONTARIO-Feb. 20, 2009 – The Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) yesterday concluded the country’s first-ever seminar on supply chain opportunities in Canada’s growing wind energy industry. The seminar, titled Opportunities in Canada’s Wind Energy Supply and Value Chains, was an unqualified success with larger-than-expected attendance of more than 370 delegates from a wide range of sectors including manufacturing, construction, engineering, steel fabrication, and specialty component suppliers.
Delegates gathered in Toronto Feb. 18-19 to network and discuss the new economic opportunity presented by Canada’s expanding wind energy industry. The national seminar, developed and organized by the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) in collaboration with Industry Canada, was the first in a series of educational sessions the association will host this year on various topics relating to Canada’s wind energy industry under the Wind Matters banner. The series is sponsored by SkyPower, Vestas, Suncor Energy, and Mainstream Renewable Power.
The event drew to a close as Prime Minister Stephen Harper and U.S. President Barrack Obama announced in Ottawa they are establishing a U.S.-Canada "clean energy dialogue" as the first step toward a North American climate change treaty.
“Wind energy represents an opportunity for Canada’s traditional manufacturing sector to diversify in these trying economic times,” said Robert Hornung, President of CanWEA. “This milestone event proved there is significant interest on the behalf of business to further explore this opportunity. We look forward to continued work with the federal and provincial governments to put in place the policy frameworks required to ensure that Canadian firms can effectively compete for clean energy opportunities with American firms.”
Wind energy represents a major industrial development and economic stimulus opportunity for Canada. Between now and 2020 it is estimated that $1 trillion will be invested in new wind energy facilities worldwide and that more than 1.75 million jobs will be created in this rapidly growing industry. This has created a strong demand for wind turbines – comprising more than 8,000 separate components – leaving manufacturers challenged to keep up. There is also high demand for a broad range of specialized services in areas such as construction, steel fabrication, transportation, engineering, and operations and maintenance.
CanWEA’s Wind Vision 2025 – Powering Canada’s Future, argues that Canada has the potential to make wind energy the country’s next great economic opportunity, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions and addressing other environmental concerns. Achieving the goal of providing 20 per cent of the country’s electricity needs with wind energy by the year 2025 will result in $79 billion in new investment, the creation of up to 52,000 new “green collar” jobs, and more than $165 million in new revenues for municipalities, many in rural areas hit hard by traditional resource declines.
The Canadian Wind Energy association (CanWEA) is a non-profit industry association representing more than 400 members in the wind energy industry. CanWEA promotes the responsible development and application of all aspects of wind energy in Canada, including the creation of a suitable policy environment.
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