The Canadian Electricity Association – which represents private-sector generators and public utilities across Canada – has released its 2015 Sustainable Electricity Annual Report.
The document reports that electricity generators reduced their greenhouse gas emissions by 5.8% in 2014, which contributed to a 22% reduction in emissions over the past five years. This is largely attributed to the closing of Ontario’s coal plants, which the CEA says was “one of the largest climate change initiatives ever undertaken in North America.”
Other emissions like nitrogen oxide, Sulphur dioxide, and mercury were also reduced. The CEA attributes these reductions from association members investing $13 billion in infrastructure renewal and other technological modernizations.
The CEA also notes that there was a significant improvement in energy conservation. Conservation programs like Demand Response help reduce the need for new generation infrastructure.
Although over 80% of Canada’s electricity is already generated from sources that are carbon-emissions free, the electricity sector is on track to achieve further emissions reductions by 2020. This will be accomplished with investments in innovations like carbon capture, high efficiency gas turbines, and renewable energy technology.