Minister Ashfield was joined by the Honourable Jack Keir, New Brunswick’s Minister of Energy, Gaëtan Thomas, President and CEO of New Brunswick Power, Alan Richardson, Chair of PowerShift Atlantic and Vice President of Integrated Customer Service, Nova Scotia Power, and Dr. Liuchen Chang, Professor and Researcher, University of New Brunswick, to announce a total investment of up to $32 million for the electricity demonstration project, which utilizes smart grid technology.
"Investments in clean energy technologies are a key part of our balanced approach to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and positioning Canada at the forefront of clean energy technology," said Minister Ashfield. "Our government is investing in this smart grid project to encourage clean energy innovation and to help create high-quality jobs for Atlantic Canadians."
"Smart grid technology holds great opportunity for New Brunswick," stated Energy Minister Jack Keir. "NB Power and our provincial ICT industry are doing very innovative work in this area, and I am incredibly pleased that the province is able to provide over $2 million in support of this initiative."
This project will help to combine the latest digital smart grid technology for managing the delivery of renewable electricity across communities in Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and New Brunswick.
It will allow utility companies to better understand how customers will react to smart grid technologies and which electricity loads can be managed better by real-time demand. It will also assist these utility companies in understanding how to make the best use of renewable energy resources in the region. Up to 2,000 customers will have new data on consumption that will affect behaviour and save them money. Further, the utilities could have new power system options resulting in operating savings and environmental benefits.
"This is a significant project for NB Power and our customers," said Gaëtan Thomas, President and CEO of NB Power. "By working together, we will be able to focus on each others’ strengths while also building expertise right here in the Maritimes."
As part of Canada’s Economic Action Plan, the Clean Energy Fund is investing $795 million in clean energy technology development and demonstration over five years. The Government of Canada’s support will help launch nearly 20 projects under the renewable and clean energy portion of the Clean Energy Fund, totalling up to $146 million. Three carbon capture and storage projects have also been announced, totalling $466 million from the fund.
The Government of Canada is investing $15.9 million through the Clean Energy Fund in New Brunswick Power’s Electricity Load Control Demonstration project. The goal of the four-year project is to examine how changing patterns in energy consumption can help utilities transform energy production to reduce greenhouse gases.