A smarter, cleaner energy future

A smarter, cleaner energy future

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Contributors:

Nova Scotia Power

Adapted from the April 25, 2022 Smart Energy Conference keynote speech by Mark Sidebottom, Chief Operating Officer and Past Chair of the Halifax Chamber’s Board of Directors.

Nova Scotia has been on a clean energy journey for over 15 years. We’ve made progress and changes together, thanks to the innovative and determined spirit of all Nova Scotians and our collective commitment to a cleaner energy future for our families and our communities.

Our energy future includes battery technology, solar and wind systems, smart meters, and a smarter grid working together to provide green energy options. It’s a future where customers can better understand and control their energy use, and new green jobs are created for the green economy in Nova Scotia and across the region.

This future isn’t far off. Together, we have successfully reduced coal use by 44% and are on track to generate approximately 60% renewable energy this year. The next steps are ambitious and will take all of us working together: customers, industry partners, government, First Nations, communities, and stakeholders.

The Path to 2030

In Nova Scotia, we have eight coal-fired units to retire by 2030 to achieve our legislated target of 80% renewable energy. The Path to 2030 will require a mix of energy solutions. One of them is the Atlantic Loop, a new transmission line connecting Nova Scotia and New Brunswick to clean energy sources in other parts of Canada.

The Nova Scotia Government has been working to advance discussions and secure funding for this important solution for our region. We’re supporting these efforts and confident the Atlantic Loop will help achieve Canada’s and Nova Scotia’s ambitious 2030 climate goals. But Nova Scotia’s energy future must include more than imported energy.

The grid of the future

As we move forward on our Path to 2030, we’re focusing on wind energy, battery storage, and converting coal units to natural gas.

Wind energy: With some potential new locations identified, our team is collaborating with stakeholders to bring more wind energy onto the system. Like past wind collaborations, including Sable Wind and South Canoe, we look forward to opportunities to incorporate feedback and input from customers, stakeholders, and local communities.

When we work together, the result is a more reliable system, an engaged community and the most affordable approach for customers. We want to do more of the same.

Battery storage: Despite its best efforts, wind can’t solely keep the lights on. It needs a backup energy source. Our team will be incorporating several grid-scale batteries to store energy and ensure continued reliable service for our customers.

As part of the Intelligent Feeder Pilot Project, a 1.2-MW battery installed at our Elmsdale substation is enabling us to store power generated at the nearby wind farm and then supply that electricity to the grid to match customer demand.

Coal to natural gas: We’re also working on converting two coal units to natural gas, while also considering the future potential for hydrogen, which is incredible! Hydrogen can be produced from diverse local resources and generate electricity with potentially near-zero greenhouse gas emissions.

We’re exploring all options—blue hydrogen, carbon capture, and Small Modular Reactors. It’s all about balancing priorities and cutting carbon, while also keeping electricity affordable and reliable for our customers.

Working together

Nova Scotia can potentially become one of the cleanest and most resilient provinces in Canada. The important changes we’ve made together so far took effort and coordination from all of us: utility, government, customers, industry, communities, and other stakeholders.

Together, we’re laying the groundwork for transformative change and a greener Nova Scotia. The momentum is building because we're all rowing in the same direction. It’s an exciting time. The future is happening now, and if we continue to work together, we can secure it.

For more information about Nova Scotia’s clean energy transition, visit:

nspower.ca/clean

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