Utilities announce energy saving plan

Yukon Energy and the Yukon Electrical Company Ltd. have a plan to get people to use less electricity. The utilities expect demand for electricity to balloon over the coming decades, and already our hydro capacity is stretched to its limit.

Yukon Energy and the Yukon Electrical Company Ltd. have a plan to get people to use less electricity.

The utilities expect demand for electricity to balloon over the coming decades, and already our hydro capacity is stretched to its limit.

Part of the solution, according to the new five-year plan, is what is known as demand side management, or encouraging people to be more efficient with their electricity use.

Without demand side management, residential electricity use is expected to increase 59 per cent and commercial electricity use is expected to increase 71 per cent by 2030.

The plan consists of a group of incentives, rebates and educational programs to encourage lower electricity usage.

Hot water and space heating each account for 19 per cent of residential electricity use.

One of the residential programs will look at the feasibility of using heat pumps as an alternate source of heating for homes.

The technology works like a refrigerator to extract heat from cool water, air or the ground.

Yukon Energy is hosting an event to highlight the potential of the technology Thursday, May 30, at noon at the Westmark in Whitehorse.

Other residential programs include offering rebates on the purchase of LED lights and timers for automotive block heaters.

The program will also educate the public on low-cost ways to decrease electricity usage.

In the commercial sector, lighting accounts for 37 per cent of electricity use, while heating, ventilation and air conditioning together account for 22 per cent.

Utilities will pay incentives to commercial customers who complete a lighting redesign study and retrofit their lighting systems towards lowering power consumption.

An incentive program will also be developed to encourage efficiency in new building construction.

As well, incentives will be offered for replacing inefficient regenerators and for purchasing energy-efficient computer equipment.

A big question mark of this electricity conservation plan is the industrial sectors.

Which new mines come onto the grid, and when, will greatly affect the demand for power in the territory.

Industrial customers are few, but each demand a large amount of power.

And because of the inherent riskiness of the mining sector, planning to meet the demands of the industry is a difficult proposition.

The five-year demand side management plan addresses the industrial sector only to say that customers will be handled on a case-by-case basis, and that efforts will be made to encourage energy efficiency at the design phase.

Currently Yukon’s base load is handled by hydro power, and diesel is burned when demand cannot be met by hydro, typically in the winter months.

Power rates are on the rise, and the government has announced its intention to do away with an electricity rebate that saves residential customers an average of about 20 per cent on their power bill.

Yukon Energy plans to replace diesel power with cheaper natural gas over the coming years.

It is also exploring hydro projects and other alternative energy sources, although no major projects are on the immediate horizon.

Contact Jacqueline Ronson at

jronson@yukon-news.com

Just Posted

Yukon paleontologists Grant Zazula (left) and Elizabeth Hall (right) examine mammoth fossils in Whitehorse on June 10. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Mammoth bones discovered at Dawson mine site

“So this is just a start, hopefully, we’re going to be learning a lot.”

Rodney and Ekaterina Baker plead guilty to offences under the Yukon’s Civil Emergency Measures Act for breaking isolation requirements in order to sneak into a vaccine clinic and receive Moderna vaccine doses in Beaver Creek. (Facebook/Submitted)
Couple who broke isolation rules to get vaccines in Beaver Creek fined $2,300

Crown and defence agreed on no jail time for Rod and Ekaterina Baker

X
WYATT’S WORLD

Wyatt’s World for June 16, 2021.… Continue reading

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Yukon News file)
COVID-19 outbreak surges to 50 active cases in the Yukon

Officials urge Yukoners to continue following guidelines, get vaccinated

Team Yukon during the 2007 Canada Winter Games in Whitehorse. (Submitted/Sport Yukon)
Whitehorse will bid for 2027 Canada Winter Games

Bid would be submitted in July 2022

Jonathan Antoine/Cabin Radio
Flooding in Fort Simpson on May 8.
Fort Simpson asked for military help. Two people showed up.

Sarah Sibley Local Journalism Initiative, Cabin Radio Residents of a flooded Northwest… Continue reading

Two participants cross the finish line at the City of Whitehorse Kids Triathlon on June 12 with Mayor Dan Curtis on hand to present medals. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
2021 Kids’ Triathlon draws 76 young athletes

Youth ages five to 14 swim, run and bike their way to finish line

Lily Witten performs her Canadian Nationals beam routine on June 14. John Tonin/Yukon News
Three Yukon gymnasts break 20-year Nationals absence

Bianca Berko-Malvasio, Maude Molgat and Lily Witten competed at the Canadian Nationals – the first time in 20 years the Yukon’s been represented at the meet

For the second year running, the Yukon Quest will not have 1,000 mile race. Crystal Schick/Yukon News
The Yukon Quest will be two shorter distance events instead of a 1,000 mile race

After receiving musher feeback, the Yukon Quest Joint Board of Directors to hold two shorter distances races instead of going forward with the 1,000 mile distance

It’s been a long time since most Yukoners have seen downtown Skagway. (Andrew Seal/Yukon News file)
What Canada-U.S. border changes could mean for Alaska travel

The federal government is expected to make an announcement on Monday

A rendering of the proposed new city hall/services building and transit hub. (City of Whitehorse/submitted)
City building plans move forward

Council approves procurement going ahead

Western and Northern premiers met this week to discuss joint issues. (Joe Savikataaq/Twitter)
Premiers meet at Northern Premiers’ Forum and Western Premiers’ Conference

Nunavut Premier Joe Savikataaq virtually hosted both meetings this year

The sun sets over Iqaluit on Oct. 26, 2020. Nunavut’s chief public health officer says two COVID-19 cases at Iqaluit’s middle school came from household transmission and the risk to other students is low. (Emma Tranter/Canadian Press)
Iqaluit school’s contacts and classmates cleared after two COVID-19 cases

With an outbreak ongoing in Iqaluit, the Aqsarniit middle school has split students into two groups

Most Read