QUEST Canada has launched its two-week-long awareness-raising campaign, asking policy makers, businesses, energy providers, energy sector decision-makers and Canadians from across the country, “Why are we limiting our ability to achieve net-zero?”
Canada has set ambitious greenhouse gas emission (GHG) reduction targets, making international commitments to reach net-zero emissions by 2050, yet we’re not adequately pursuing all available local low and zero emission solutions.
Canada’s demand for electricity is projected to double, or even triple, by 2050. Building on this foundation of clean electricity, Canada’s net-zero pathway still requires a suite of complementary local low-carbon energy solutions that are not being adequately pursued. The good news is that these energy solutions already exist. Unfortunately, many are currently being underutilized, such as district energy, biofuels and renewable natural gas.
“What we really need is a more comprehensive net-zero dialogue. We must shift the conversation, acknowledging the need for urgency, by building on electrification with the inclusion of a diversity of local low-carbon energy solutions,” says Tonja Leach, executive director of QUEST Canada. “On the ground, this means developing policy support for underutilized energy solutions, achieving regulatory reform, creating space for better integrated system planning, and closing the gap on the urban and rural divide.”
Local communities across Canada need to be able to implement practical solutions that meet their unique needs and challenges, supporting efforts to achieve net-zero as quickly as possible. Underutilized local low and zero emission energy options provide some of these solutions.
“Achieving net-zero will require everyone as well as every low-carbon energy source in Canada working together. One technology is not going to provide everything we need everywhere in Canada; we’re going to need a portfolio of net-zero options that can scale and meet all our energy needs,” says Richard Carlson, director of energy policy and energy exchange at Pollution Probe.
Follow along as QUEST Canada makes space for a more comprehensive net-zero dialogue, highlight underutilized energy sources, and share our thoughts on the practical solutions local communities across Canada require in order to reach their net-zero targets faster. A durable and just net-zero future is waiting.
Featured image credit: Nong Vang/Unsplash.