On Energy Exchange

  C ANADIANS ARE at a turning point when it comes to how we get from point A to point B.

Transportation was the second biggest emitter of greenhouse gases in Canada in 2014, with 23 per cent of total emissions and about one-third of end-use energy demand. Passenger transportation alone made up 13 per cent of our national GHG emissions.

Ingrid Thompson is the CEO of Pollution Probe. Steven Pacifico is the Director of Energy Exchange.
Ingrid Thompson is the CEO of Pollution Probe. Steven Pacifico is the Director of Energy Exchange.DAVE STARRETT

With the historic Paris Agreement on climate change in place, countries around the world are mobilizing in the fight against climate change. But climate action isn’t just about government leaders and industry decision-makers taking action. Now, more than ever, people across Canada are taking action to fight climate change — both at home and on the road.

Energy is central to our mobility, today and for the future. We need to understand the energy story, from the quickly growing number of electric vehicles — now more than 25,000 — hitting Canada’s roads, to the advancing research in biofuels and their role in Canada’s future. Asking questions like, “Can my electric vehicle do
the great Canadian road trip?” isn’t only fun, it’s relevant. This issue will show you where we are heading and help you make informed decisions that will count. As Canada moves forward on its pan-Canadian climate change policy, outlined in December, tectonic shifts to energy and environmental policy are happening
south of the border. Trevor Tombe, assistant professor of economics at the University of Calgary, explores what Canada’s climate policy will mean in light of the Trump administration (At Issue, page 14).

Want to take action? Ziya Tong, host of Daily Planet on the Discovery Channel, shares her passion for protecting life, the magical world of science and what we can do to reduce our environmental impact in Insight (page 10). Or, get inspired by our feature on how people across Canada have built energy efficiency into their homes (“Bringing it home”, page 32). Of course, our homes include our wider communities. In the First Peoples POV column, Chantel Henderson, a participant in Lumos Energy’s 20/20 Catalyst program, gives us her take on what renewable energy can mean for Indigenous communities and in particular women’s economic empowerment (page 42).

Finally, this issue marks a turning point as I bid farewell to Energy Exchange and introduce the new fearless leader and CEO of Pollution Probe, Ingrid Thompson. Ingrid brings a wealth of experience in environment, energy and infrastructure in Canada and internationally. Along with our fabulous team, Ingrid will help to steward Energy Exchange forward until my replacement is announced.

I couldn’t be more proud of the accomplishments of Energy Exchange. With more than two million learning touchpoints throughout Canada to date, Energy Exchange is helping Canadians understand our energy story and navigate the low-carbon energy transition.

Energy is vital to our quality of life and the prosperity of our country. It is critical that we invest in an energy system that is environmentally and socially sustainable. It has been an honour to lead this organization. I encourage you to stay engaged and informed. Energy Exchange will be there to help support you.

‘We need to understand the energy story to inform our choices.’

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