Canada’s Renewable Power Landscape – Energy Market Analysis

A view of the TeaCup rock from the PEI’s Darnley area at sunset

Prince Edward Island

Electricity generation on Prince Edward Island came almost entirely from renewables in 2015, reflecting PEI’s exceptional wind resource and a small amount of biomass. Renewable capacity on PEI increased from about 14 MW in 2005 to over 200 MW in 2015.

Over the last decade, the share of generation from renewables grew from 86% to 99%, with wind farms supplying almost all the electricity generated (596 GW.h) in 2015.

However, PEI uses a lot of electricity from other provinces to meet its needs. In 2015, almost 75% of electricity used in PEI was supplied via subsea cables from New Brunswick. The high share for renewables in PEI reflects the share attributable to power generation, and not power consumption.

Almost half of PEI’s installed capacity consists of diesel and oil-fired facilities. These thermal-fired generators are typically used as “peakers” or for emergency back-up when demand is high and off-island supply is interrupted, or island wind production is intermittent.

Maritime Electric Company Ltd. owns and operates most thermal generation on the island. The balance of the thermal generation is owned by the municipal utility in the city of Summerside. Eight wind farms are owned by a small number of independent companies, including a municipal utility, an Independent Power Producer, and a Crown corporation.

To encourage wind development, PEI passed the Renewable Energy Act (REA) in 2005. REA required utilities to source a minimum of 15% of electrical energy from renewable energy sources by 2010. 15% was achieved by 2010, and by 2014 there was 203 MW of wind generation installed on PEI. The REA also provided a net metering program for small capacity renewable generators (100 kW or less).

In mid-2015, the REA was amended to eliminate the requirement that utilities source a percentage of their sales through renewables. Energy and the corresponding renewable energy credits can be sold outside the province.

TABLE 12 Renewable Electric Capacity and Generation in PEI
  Capacity in MW and % Generation in GW.h and %
  2005 2015 2005 2015
Wind 13 203 40 587
8% 56% 86% 98%
Biomass 1 1 0 4
1% 0.3% 0% 1%
All renewable sources 14 204 40 591
8% 56% 86% 99%
All sources 173 363 46 596

This table shows PEI's electric capacity and generation from renewables in 2005 and 2015. The share of wind in total capacity increased from 8% to 56% while the share of biomass decreased from 1% to 0.3%. The share of wind in total generation increased from 86% to 98% while the share of biomass increased from 0% to 1%.

FIGURE 23 Renewable Resources and Capacity in PEI

FIGURE 23 Renewable Resources and Capacity in PEI

Text version of this map

This map shows the location and approximate capacity of renewable power plants with a capacity of at least 10 MW across PEI. Majority of wind resources are located along the western and eastern coasts. There are no hydroelectric, biomass, or solar resources with a capacity of at least 10 MW.

This map shows the location and approximate capacity of renewable power plants with a capacity of at least 10 MW across PEI. Majority of wind resources are located along the western and eastern coasts. There are no hydroelectric, biomass, or solar resources with a capacity of at least 10 MW.

FIGURE 24 Electric Generation Capacity in PEI

FIGURE 24 Electric Generation Capacity in PEI

Text version of this graphic

This bar graph shows PEI’s total electric capacity in 2005 and 2015 for all fuel sources. Capacity increased from 173 MW to 363 MW, with renewables increasing from 8% to 56% of total capacity.

A woman with her bicycle along the boardwalk at dusk

 

 

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