New report proposes pathway to 90 per cent renewable electricity by 2030 | Ecology Action Centre

New report proposes pathway to 90 per cent renewable electricity by 2030

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, November 25, 2019  

K’JIPUKTUK (Halifax) - A new report released today charts the path for a low-carbon electricity system in Nova Scotia. The Ecology Action Centre (EAC) commissioned Torrie Smith Associates to author the technical and modelling report. 

The technical report proposes a scenario that leads to 90 per cent renewable electricity, a complete phase-out of coal power, and significant increases in energy efficiency and electric transportation – all by the year 2030.

Stephen Thomas, Energy Campaign Coordinator at the EAC says he’s excited about the findings.

“It shows a compelling, realistic pathway to respond to the climate emergency while creating jobs and local, affordable renewable energy for our province,” says Thomas. 

The report is the first of its kind in Atlantic Canada. The proposed low-carbon scenario would result in an electricity generation mix of about 43 per cent wind, five per cent solar, 43 per cent hydro and nine per cent natural gas by 2030. It includes measures like deep-energy retrofits, greatly expanded energy efficiency programs, and the electrification of significant portions of personal transportation and buildings. If adopted, this would result in overall electricity demand dropping by about seven per cent in the province between 2019 and 2030. 

The proposed pathway would lead to significant overall greenhouse gas emissions reductions in Nova Scotia - more than 69 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030 or a provincial total of about 7.3 million tonnes. 

As of 2017, Nova Scotia used coal for about 55 per cent of annual electricity generation and has eight coal-fired generation units across four coal plants, all owned by Nova Scotia Power. The Federal government has a national mandate to phase-out coal power by 2030, but the Province has proposed plans to burn coal until at least 2040. The EAC hopes these plans will change. 

“The health of Nova Scotians and the health of our economy depend on a path that diversifies our electricity sector toward affordable, clean electricity as quickly as we can while leaving no one behind,” says Thomas. 

The Federal government’s analysis has shown that succeeding to phase out coal electricity in Nova Scotia by 2030 would avoid 89 premature deaths, 8,000 asthma episodes and 58,000 days of breathing difficulty for Nova Scotians, among other benefits. 

“Phasing out coal in Nova Scotia is not only possible, but it also makes more sense now than ever before. We have an opportunity to collaborate to set the right path to phase out coal in Nova Scotia,” says Thomas.

The release comes at a time when Nova Scotia Power is beginning an extensive, multi-year planning process at the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board. The provincial government is simultaneously considering new goals for things like renewable electricity, energy efficiency and electric vehicles.  

“We’re looking forward to engaging with the public consultations on new climate goals in Nova Scotia, and to intervening in the electricity planning process underway at the UARB,” says Thomas. “It is the right move for jobs, our economy and the climate. Let’s get to it.”


Full report available online at  


Stephen Thomas 
Energy Campaign Coordinator, Ecology Action Centre 
902 441 7136 


Ralph Torrie  
Principal, Torrie Smith Associates 
Skype: ralphtorrie   |   Mobile: 289-691-2408   |   Landline: 905-372-0216   |  

(Available by telephone or Skype from Coburg, Ontario) 

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