Category: Wind



Bull Creek Wind Farm

151. Wind farm powers 500 Alberta schools

Twenty six school districts in Alberta banded together to purchase 100 per cent renewable energy and have the Bull Creek Wind Farm, near Provost, Alberta to show for it. We talk to school trustees, the CEO of BluEarth Renewables, a farmer and a member of the Alberta Government on location at the Bull Creek Wind Farm.

Summerside2

148. Summerside smart grid uses 46 per cent wind power

Summerside, Prince Edward Island (PEI) replaced expensive diesel power with record amounts of wind power using a smart grid and simple energy storage in residents furnaces and hot water heaters.

A beautiful home in West Cape PEI with the West Cape Wind Farm in the background. Islanders get an average of 26 per cent of their electricity from wind power. Virtually all of the rest comes from an inter-tie undersea cable to the New Brunswick grid. Photo David Dodge, GreenEnergyFutures.ca

145. Prince Edward Island rocks wind power

Prince Edward Island, Canada (PEI) is home of the highest proportion of wind power in North America. We talk to Energy Minister Paula Biggar about how this little province replaced expensive diesel power with enough wind power to provide 26 per cent of the electricity in PEI.

Calgary is wind powered

143. Renewable energy powers Canada’s oil capital

When people think Calgary, renewable energy doesn’t usually come to mind. But dig a little deeper and it seems the oil capital of Canada is more ready for a carbon tax than many jurisdiction, thanks to investments in renewable energy the city is in a great position to save money.

Medicine Hat, Alberta AKA "The Gas City" wanted to diversify into wind power so they entered into a public private partnership with Wind River Power to build a 6 megawatt wind farm, the largest inside a city in Canada. The power purchase agreement is what helped access bank financing from ATB Financial, something that is challenging in Alberta's deregulated electricity market. Since Alberta needs 5-7 gigawatts of new renewable energy by 2030, creating enough price certainty to attract bank financing will be very important in Alberta. Photo David Dodge, GreenEnergyFutures.ca Learn more: http://www.greenenergyfutures.ca/episode/canada-germany-renewable-financing

141. Financing critical for renewable energy projects

Securing investment in renewable energy is getting easier, but banks have a few things they like to see in projects, like price certainty and long term contracts that ensure a steady stream of revenue to support the loans needed to develop renewable energy projects.

Saskatchewan will add another 1,700 megawatts of wind capacity between now and 2030 to reach their goal of 50% of generation capacity. This naturally means actual generation by renewables will be much lower due to capacity factors of less than 50%. Photo David Dodge, GreenEnergyFutures.ca

140. Saskatchewan blows the dust off its dirty electricity grid

Moving from one of the dirtiest grids in the country to 50 per cent renewable is no small task. However, Saskatchewan’s ambitions are matched by the quality of their renewable resource. We visit the Morse Wind Farm in southern Saskatchewan to see the start of the wind energy boom in Saskatchewan.

In Green Energy Futures' whirlwind tour of wind energy myths we learned that the only significant health effect of wind farms is that they annoy some people. Beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder. Photo David Dodge, GreenEnergyFutures.ca

133. A whirlwind tour of wind energy myths

Ever hear the one about how it takes more energy to make a wind turbine than it will produce over its lifetime? This week we blow the smoke away, and delve into some of the more pernicious myths about wind energy. Bookmark this one, you’ll want to use it later!

Jason Rioux's shipping container cabin. The cabin was built out of seven sea containers in a hub and spoke pattern near Bobcaygeon, Ontario. This incredibly innovative sea container cabin is powered by a small 1 kW solar system and is packed with energy efficiency innovation - probably part of the reason the video has more than 100k views on YouTube. Photo Courtesy of Jason Rioux

130. Green Energy Futures: Our favourite stories from 2015

2015 will go down as the year that marked the dawning of the age of the net-zero home. We took notice by preparing our four-part Chasing Net-Zero series. And we we just loved the story about Jason Rioux’s shipping container cabin, as did almost 200,000 viewers!  Here are some of our favourites from 2015.

Highlight of 2015 - Dan Hofer, financial boss, David Vonesch of Skyfire Energy and Jake Hofer electrician with Green Acres Farm near Bassano, Alberta pose in front of their 2 megawatt solar farm that consists of more than 7,600 solar modules that produce the electricity to run Green Acre's recycling and farming operations. Photo David Dodge GreenEnergyFutures.ca

129. Green Energy: The highlights of 2015

2015 was a banner year for clean, green energy! Vancouver pledged to go 100 per cent renewable energy, the Cowessess First Nation built a wind turbine and is testing energy storage, Edmonton passed an energy transition plan and Rachael Notley the new premier of Alberta announced a plan to phase out coal and greatly expand renewable energy.

Keeping turbines off of ridge tops, upwind of side slopes, and away from pronounced valleys, help reduce raptor fatalities in wind farms. Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures

104. Birds, bats and wind turbines

We dive into the science and research behind the effect of wind turbines on bats and birds.

Energy Storage

57. Energy storage: Power-to-gas and better batteries

Renewable energy produces energy when the sun shines and the wind blows, but these entrepreneurs are developing better batteries and new and innovative ways of capturing and storing renewable energy.

Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures Shot at EECOL Electric in Calgary, Alberta.

45. Big idea: The distributed generation revolution

Ever looked at the breakdown of your electricity bill with all of its transmission and distribution charges and wondered if there was a better way? There is and it’s called distributed generation. Learn about it this week at Green Energy Futures.

Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia

24. Our favourite stories of 2012

Join us as we dive into our archives and give you our favourite clips and behind the scenes moments from 2012. From nearly falling into the Bay of Fundy to angry anti-wind protesters we go coast to coast to coast to give you best.

Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures Nova Scotia

22. The greenest little campus in Canada

Université Sainte-Anne in Nova Scotia switched from fuel oil boilers to biomass, then added solar thermal modules to their dorms and even installed two wind turbines and are saving money on operating costs!

Austen Hughes, a community wind developer with Natural Forces is developing several projects that qualify for Nova Scotia's community feed-in tariff. Photo by David Dodge

20. Nova Scotia’s community power

If you’re a cooperative, not-for-profit, municipality, university, First Nation or Community Economic Development Investment Fund you can qualify for Nova Scotia’s community feed-in tariff. This means a guaranteed economic return on any approved project and it means regular folks and not necessarily large multi-nationals get to see the financial benefits of building out new renewable energy infrastructure.

Heidi Eijgel, rides her horse Luna, past the turbines of Summerview wind farm.

12. Heidi Eigel: One farmer’s wind story

Heidi Eijgel has lived next to the 136 megawatt Summerview wind farm since 2003. She is happy to have these towers of clean, green power next to her home. She tells us about the noise levels, the effects on wildlife and the business and environmental case for wind energy.

Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures Dawson Creek and Tumbler Ridge BC Sustainable Dawson Creek and Big Wind in BC

11. Big wind in British Columbia

When the wind blows in British Columbia’s Peace region it’s being put to use. In the plast 4 years three large wind projects have been built in this beautiful, remote place. We explore the story of two of them, visiting one under construction and one where the community led the way.

Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures

10. The renewable energy revolution in Ontario

The German style feed-in tariff that Ontario implemented in 2009 has made Ontario a North American leader in renewable energy. Learn how they did and why other provinces need to follow the lead of Ontario.

09. How Toronto’s waterfront wind turbine kick-started a green energy revolution

When the people behind the Toronto Renewable Energy Cooperative first thought up the idea of a highly visible urban wind turbine they had no idea how far it would eventually go. From this revolutionary first project grew the organizations and people who would nudge Ontario towards North America’s first German style feed-in tariff.

Dan Balaban, the founder and CEO of Greengate Power has almost 1500 megawatts of wind projects in the pipeline.

05. Meet Dan Balaban – Alberta’s wind energy cowboy

Dan Balaban is a genuine wind energy cowboy. In five short years this Calgary entrepreneur has gone from little knowledge about the wind business to building some of the largest wind farms in Canada.

What’s his secret? It’s in his business plan and his determination to succeed. Meet Dan Balaban in this weeks episode of Green Energy Futures.

Photo David Dodge, Green Energy Futures

02. NAIT’s new alternative energy program zeros in on solar, wind, geothermal and more

NAIT’s Alternative Energy Program is helping meet the increasing demand for professionals to design, build, install and maintain green energy systems. A two-year program, it teaches students the intricacies of solar, wind, geothermal and even fuel cell systems.

Meet the students and instructors who are helping to create the next generation of skilled green energy workers.

01. Author Chris Turner on taking the green energy leap

Author Chris Turner is an inspiration. As a writer he has focused on real world examples of people, places and programs where the future is already here. Things like self-sufficient islands in Denmark, Germany’s renewable energy metamorphosis and the surprising results of Spain’s commitment to high-speed rail.

We speak with Chris about the three leaps we need to take to replace non-renewable energy with renewable energy in the next 50 years.

Medicine Hat’s smart energy revolution (pilot episode)

The award winning Hat Smart program in Medicine Hat, Alberta provides incentives and rebates for renewable energy and energy efficiency and has really captured the imagination of residents of this Southern Alberta City of 61,000 people. In this week’s episode Alderman Ted Clugston explains how success depends on a sexy program, a solar powered dentist shows his stuff and a home builder explains how building an EnerGuide 89 geothermal heated home is helping him build better, greener homes.