Job Growth in Canada’s Booming Clean Energy Sector Outpaced Every Other Sector in 2013: Report

A new report from Clean Energy Canada finds that in 2014, the value of clean energy projects approached $11 billion, an increase of 88 per cent from 2013.

“Here’s a good news story on the clean energy front—investment is pouring in, and employers are hiring,” said Merran Smith, executive director of Clean Energy Canada. “Canadians are concerned that we’ve put too many eggs in the oil and gas basket, and the clean energy sector can help round out the Canadian economy.”

In 2013, the most recent year for which reliable data exists, Canada’s clean energy industries were together responsible for 26,900 direct jobs — up 14 per cent over the previous year, a rate of growth that outpaced every other sector in the country.

The report, Tracking the Energy Revolution — Canada 2015, contrasts Ottawa’s current “missing in action” approach with the strong leadership of the U.S. government, and highlights how Canada’s next federal government could help boost clean energy investment.

“The news on clean energy is good, but with federal leadership, it could be terrific,” Smith said. “Unlike Washington, Ottawa’s pretty much been ignoring this sector. We hope and expect this report will serve as a flashing neon sign for federal parties: There’s a huge opportunity here; get on board and show us what you can do.”

The $10.9 billion in investment in renewable energy in 2014 is almost double that of the agriculture, forestry and fishing sectors put together, the report found. Much of that investment is currently flowing to Ontario, due to its favourable policies.

The report also found that wind delivered the bulk of Canada’s added renewable power capacity last year  — enough to serve half a million homes.

Photo: David Clarke via Flickr

Emma Gilchrist is a reporter, editor, public speaker and spreadsheet-keeper. She started her journalism career more than 15 years ago…

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