On Thursday morning, the International Energy Agency (IEA) released a report saying that if Canada wants to meet its climate goals, it will need more electricity.
The IEA report mostly paints a positive picture for Canada’s federal energy policy. However, it also points out that the country will need more electricity in the future and calls on Canada to use its non emitting energy resources such as hydro, wind, solar and nuclear power.
According to IEA, Canada has one of the world’s cleanest energy grids which 83% of the electricity comes from clean sources. But it recommends that Canada should not ease on its achievements, more electricity and “even deeper cuts” will be needed if Canada wants to reach net-zero in 2050.
IEA executive director, Fatih Birol said: “Canada’s wealth of clean electricity and its innovative spirit can help drive a secure and affordable transformation of its energy system and help realize its ambitious goals,”
“Perhaps more significantly, however, Canada will need to ensure sufficient new clean generation capacity to meet the sizeable levels of electrification that its net-zero targets imply.”
As claimed by the Liberals, by 2035 there will be a 100% net-zero-emitting electricity system. Big changes like only zero-emission cars sold in Canada by then. Switching from gas to electric cars will put more strain in Canada’s electricity grid.
“Such a shift will require significant regulatory action,” says the report, also that the federal government will have to work closely with the provinces and territories that control how much electricity is made and how it is used.
Alberta, which relies on fossil fuels, could be able to decarbonize and become more electric if more territorial and provincial electrical grids were linked together, according to a report.
As a response to the International Energy Agency, Natural Resources Minister Jonathan Wilkinson said “This report acknowledges Canada’s ambitious efforts and historic investments to develop pathways to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050 and ensure a transition that aligns with our shared objective of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius,”
However, despite the goal of reaching net-zero, total emissions from oil and gas extraction rose 26% between 2000 and 2019 due to an increase in production.
“Canada will need to reconcile future growth in oil sands production with increasingly strict greenhouse gas requirements,” the report states.
Even thought the IEA did a report last year where they determined that in order to achieve net-zero by 2050, governments should to stop investing in coal mines and oil and gas well. However, nothing was mention on Thursdays’s report.
“A glaring omission was that this assessment says nothing about production. We know that the most important thing we can do is to stop using and producing oil and gas,” said senior climate and energy program manager at Environmental Defence, Julia Levin.
“And yet that was absent from this report, and that really is a glaring omission, which is completely out of line with their [the IEA’s] own work.”
Original source material for this article taken from here