The Next Alberta sees the world’s energy economy at a turning point. Albertans need to be proactive to ensure that renewable energy joins petroleum as an important part of our energy future. About 85 percent of the electricity used in Alberta today comes from fossil fuels. Encouraging the use and development of renewable energy technologies could reduce this dependence. Such encouragement will enhance Alberta’s reputation as a global leader in energy.
Petroleum will be an important part of the Next Alberta’s energy economy. It’s vital to our hopes of developing renewables. Federal tax revenues from petroleum can kickstart the drive to diversifying our sources of energy. This wealth gives us a wonderful opportunity to emulate what the Lougheed government did in the 1970s by creating the Alberta Oil Sands Technology and Research Authority (AOSTRA). AOSTRA stimulated the growth of Alberta’s bitumen sector. A Renewable Energy Technology and Research Authority (RETRA) could do the same for renewables.
What’s my hope for the Next Alberta?
- Ottawa will devote a significant portion of the nearly $200 billion* in federal tax revenues it is likely to receive from bitumen extraction over the next 25 years to partner with Alberta and create a Renewable Energy Technology and Research Authority (RETRA).
- The federal government will follow the U.S. example and offer a 30 percent personal tax credit for purchasing renewable energy technologies such as solar-electric and wind turbine systems.
- The federal government will encourage the development of an all-Canadian west-east pipeline. Let’s replace the foreign oil consumed in Eastern Canada with Alberta petroleum.
*The Canadian Energy Research Institute