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Canadian Academy of Engineering, David Suzuki Foundation and Trottier Family Foundation launch Trottier Energy Futures Project

MONTREAL - Canada must develop an energy strategy if it is to create a sustainable future and take advantage of the growing opportunities in the clean energy sector, according to a new position paper released today under a joint project of the Canadian Academy of Engineering, the David Suzuki Foundation and the Trottier Family Foundation. Unlike most industrialized countries, Canada does not have an energy plan.

Today at the World Energy Congress in Montreal, the three organizations formally launched a partnership called the "Trottier Energy Futures Project", named for entrepreneur, engineer and philanthropist Lorne Trottier, whose family foundation is providing major funding for a multi-year project. The organizations also released the position paper "Setting the Stage for a Sustainable Energy Strategy: Canada's Necessary Opportunity".

"Energy poses big challenges for Canada in the 21st century in terms of supply, environmental sustainability, climate change and economics," Dr. Trottier, FCAE, said. "The Canadian Academy of Engineering and the David Suzuki Foundation, two highly respected organizations, bring different but complementary perspectives to the challenge. The Trottier Family Foundation is pleased to support the joint work in form of a multi-million dollar grant."

The project will start with an evaluation of current and emerging energy technologies and systems relevant to Canada and then proceed to identify integrated solutions for Canada's future energy systems. The partners will also identify the necessary changes in public policy and regulations and seek support for the project and its outcomes from the Canadian public, industry and energy and environment decision-makers. All work will be based on an objective assessment of the best science, engineering expertise and information available.

"Much of Canada's current prosperity is linked to its extensive endowment of energy sources," said CAE president Dr. Michael E. Charles. "Going forward, we need to engineer widely accepted solutions that reduce negative environmental impacts of the energy sector while not jeopardizing the social and economic well-being of Canadians."

The project has four primary goals:

  1. To identify energy strategies for Canada to be implemented between now and 2050 that would:
    • Reduce Canada's emissions of greenhouse gases from all aspects of the energy sector with the target of 80 per cent below 1990 levels by 2050;
    • Make Canada a global role model in sustainable generation, distribution and use of energy;
    • Ensure that all Canadians have access to the energy they need to enjoy a high quality of life.
  2. To recommend the optimal strategy, from among those identified, for implementation.
  3. To persuade the Canadian public, industry and governments that implementing the optimal energy strategy is in Canada's best interest.
  4. To ensure that implementation of the optimal strategy has begun within the terms of this project.

The project outcome will include a series of recommendations, reports, conferences, lectures and meetings that will create a compelling vision and roadmap for a sustainable future of Canada's energy systems.

"We recognized that engaging all sectors of Canadian society will be required to achieve a prosperous clean energy future," said DSF CEO Peter Robinson. "We want to arrive at solutions that provide all Canadians with the energy they need for a high quality of life."

For more information on the project and its partners see media backgrounder: www.trottierenergyfutures.ca

For more information, contact:

Tom Gouldsborough, Project Manager, Trottier Energy Futures Project
Phone: 204-250-6871; Email: twg@mts.net

Ian Hanington, Communications Specialist, David Suzuki Foundation
Phone: 604-732-4228, ext. 1238; Email: ihanington@davidsuzuki.org

Catherine Orer: Spécialiste des communications / Communications Specialist, Fondation David Suzuki
Phone: 514-316-4646 ×104; Email: catherine.orer@davidsuzuki.org

September 15, 2010