Conservation is an often overlooked but very important source of alternative energy. The Manitoba Hydro Power Smart Program, continues to seek the full potential of demand side management (DSM) opportunities.
Visit the following sites for energy efficiency and DSM best practices:
Best Practices Benchmarking for Energy Efficiency Programs
Canadian Energy Efficiency Centre
The objective of Power Smart is to meet energy needs through efficiency improvements rather than new sources of generation. Through Power Smart, Manitoba Hydro promotes energy efficient products, services and programs for residential, commercial and industrial customers. Homewoners can upgrade their residence for energy efficiency and utilize a Power Smart loan - which is paid through their energy bills.
The Power Smart initiative has Manitoba Government support, with a website on improving energy efficiency in commercial and residential buildings and find support financial support for these projects.
- The Lower Income Energy Efficiency Program for qualified lower income households for energy efficient retrofits for lower energy bills.
- The Home Insulation Program offers rebates for homeowners who add insulation to their existing home.
- The Manitoba R-2000 Program offers all eligible certified R-2000 homes in Manitoba the Power Smart New Home Program.
There are over twenty programs available to business owners to improve their energy usage. These programs include energy reducing methods such as reducing air leaks and building heating/cooling, water use reduction, reduced building maintenance and use of energy efficient products.
Manitoba's Earth Power Loan Program provides assistance to Manitobans who want to install geothermal heat pumps. Geothermal heat pumps, often referred to as GeoExchange or Earth Energy, use a system of pipes buried below the frost line, where the ground is warmer in winter and cooler in summer to provide heating and cooling for homes and businesses. They emit 66% less greenhouse gases than conventional heating and cooling systems and use up to 75% less electricity, reducing annual heating and cooling costs by 50% - 70%.
Installations have tripled over four years and Manitoba has become a leader in earth energy systems, including for manufacturing of systems.
Manitoba programs to promote residential or commercial installations of solar energy, for heating water are new.
Manitoba does noes not have an electricity feed law that would permit individuals to connect their solar power systems to the grid and pay them a fair price to 'feed' electricity back into the grid when not being used by the household.
The Ontario feed-in tariff (FIT) program through the Ontario Power Authority (OPA) provides a straightforward way to contract for renewable energy generation. It provides standardized program rules, prices and contracts for power produced through renewable projects. Qualifying renewable energy sources include bioenergy (biogas, biomass and landfill gas), solar photovoltaic (PV), waterpower and wind.
The program is divided into two streams - FIT and microFIT. The FIT Program is for renewable energy projects that can generate more than 10 kilowatts (kW) of electricity. Very small projects, at a home or small business which generate 10 kW or less work under the microFIT Program.
The overall benefits of feed in tarriffs are: participates are paid for the power they produce and deliver to the province’s power grid, while contributing to a healthier environment and creating new local businesses and green jobs.View FIT website
View Micro-FIT website
Download Requirements for the FIT programs (PDF)