AESO Releases Net-Zero Emissions Pathways Report

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July 8, 2022

Alberta’s power sector is undergoing significant change. This change is being driven by multiple factors within the power system and beyond. New technologies, carbon policy, broad electrification and a societal desire for cleaner forms of energy are creating substantial and rapid change across the electricity value chain, from production to consumption.

Throughout 2022, as follow-on to the 2021 Long-term Outlook and in response to the growing societal drive towards net-zero emissions, the AESO will be undertaking critical work associated with the long-term sustainability of Alberta’s electricity system. The decarbonization of the electricity system, as well as the potential for increased electrification of other sectors of the economy, will have profound impacts on how power is produced and consumed.

On June 27, 2022, the AESO published a detailed analysis of the opportunities and challenges involved in eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from Alberta’s power system. The AESO Net-Zero Emissions Pathways report is the first in-depth analysis of the potential implications of a net-zero future to focus specifically on electricity in Alberta.

The report reviews potential supply and demand combinations that may enable Alberta to reach a net-zero electricity system by 2035 while also considering potential implications to reliability, the market, and supply and transmission costs. In a net-zero system, carbon emissions are significantly reduced with any remaining emissions offset by reductions of carbon in the atmosphere coming from elsewhere.

Go HERE for more information

You can find the report HERE

Background

  • Alberta is home to Canada’s fastest-growing wind and solar energy sectors, with the province accounting for 60% of all new installed capacity across the country in 2021.  
  • In 2021 alone, 250 MW of solar energy capacity and 358 MW of wind energy capacity were added to Alberta’s electricity grid.  
  • The deregulated market in Alberta has fueled extraordinary renewable energy growth. Between 2019 and 2021, the market-based approach to renewables led to over 1,600 MW of contracted capacity and more than $3 billion in overall investments.  
  • Canada’s largest solar project is the 465 MW Travers Solar project, situated in Vulcan County, Alberta.  
  • The nation’s largest battery storage facility is the 20 MW Buffalo Creek Storage project, located near the town of Vermilion in Central Alberta. 

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