Go 100% Renewable!

Contact person:

Angela Bischoff, Outreach Director, Ontario Clean Air Alliance

Other allied projects or groups:

• Go Fossil Free (sponsored by 350.org) https://gofossilfree.org/register-an-existing-campaign-or-group/

• Global 100% Renewable Energy Campaign (International Solar Energy Society)      https://www.ises.org/content/global-100-renewable-energy-campaign


We’re calling for Ontario to be powered by 100 percent renewable electricity by 2030. We were formed in 1997 to call for a 100 percent coal phase out for Ontario. After winning that battle, we turned our attention to phasing out Ontario’s nuclear fleet when it comes to the end of its life. That means shuttering Pickering no later than 2018 when its current licence expires, followed by immediate decommissioning, and closing the Darlington and Bruce units when their current licences expire rather than sinking tens of billions of dollars into rebuilding them, locking us into high-cost, high-risk nuclear for another four decades. We have lower cost, lower emission and less risky renewable options, including water-power from Quebec, conservation, wind, solar, biomass, and biogas.

On the home page click the blue button to see our events calendar, where you may find opportunities in your area to participate in saving our world.
And please wait a few seconds for the comments to load below. Then read the ideas other people have shared and reply or add your own knowledge. Thanks!


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What is the optimum source of energy for people living in the far north? There are so many months when it is dark that solar probably won’t solve their problems. What did they traditionally use? Whale oil lamps?

I have never been to Africa and I don’t know how much money a villager in a remote area can afford. I see on google that “Stand-alone solar PV mini-grids have installed costs in Africa as low as USD 1.90 per watt for systems larger than 200 kilowatt. Solar home systems provide the annual electricity needs of off-grid households for as little as USD 56 per year, less than the average price for poor quality energy services.”

So is $56 a lot for a villager to pay? That sounds very cheap in UK or Europe but can very poor Africans afford it?


No idea!

We hear about solar and wind, etc but not much about water power. Probably that is because most of the potential electricity from rivers is already being tapped out. But is that the case? I just don’t know. I read that water power creates 59.3 per cent of Canada’s total electricity generation. Canada is the second largest producer of hydroelectricity in the world. Could we do much more than that?


Joan, the environmental community no longer supports large dams because of detrimental effects of mega projects (ie. Site C and Muskrat Falls). There is definitely lots of potential for more small water dams, and if they’re run-of-the-river there won’t likely be much opposition. But Canada could make better use of existing dams. For example, QC has a massive surplus of water power that they don’t have a market for – they could sell their surplus power to ON. Likewise, BC to AB, and MN to SK. We have a petition about this: https://www.cleanairalliance.org/deal/

Sixty times more per acre than plants grown on land? Holy smoke. I have heard about algae as some kind of wonder substance for fifty years but I haven’t seen a sinle application of it so far. If it is so great, how come they haven’t got it into mass production? Hurry up!

Algae: Fuel of the future
Biofuel made from microalgae is a giant step toward sustainability

By Day Helesic Canadian Grocer http://www.canadiangrocer.com/kruger-sustainability/algae-fuel-of-the-future-73058
When it comes to industry, fossil fuels still run the show. Even though clean energy sources such as solar, wind and hydroelectric energy have become more prevalent, industrial systems and most means of transportation still rely on coal and oil. For the sake of the planet, it’s imperative to reduce our reliance on these non-renewable, carbon-producing fuels.

The solution? How about algae—yes, the green slimy stuff that floats on the surface of ponds and grows on the inside of your aquarium.

Microalgae, which are composed of microscopic single-celled organisms, have the ability to take in sunlight and convert it to energy via photosynthesis. Some strains of these microorganisms produce oils, and these oils can be converted into fuels for industry and for cars, trucks, trains and planes. Another bonus: microalgae absorb carbon dioxide and turn it into oxygen—essentially, these critters clean the air.

Microalgae can be grown and harvested in open ponds, especially in sunny parts of the world. In order to maximize crops, however, water temperature has to be controlled, which can be difficult. Vertical growth, or closed loop production, is another system where microalgae are grown in clear plastic bags that are stacked outside and protected from the elements. But the most popular growing system is to use close-tank bioreactor plants, where the microorganisms are grown indoors in large drums. In these near perfect conditions, microalgae are sometimes harvested every day.

Fuel made from microalgae is sustainable, clean, portable and renewable, which makes it very attractive to the energy industry. This advanced biofuel also has an advantage over corn-based biofuels. The U.S. Department of Energy says microalgae can produce up to 60 times more oil per acre than plants grown on land.

Not only can microalgae be continuously and sustainably produced, the microorganisms can be stored and transported for future use. They also thrive in water sources that are unsuitable for traditional agriculture, such as brackish water or wastewater. And after oil extraction, the remaining algal biomass can be dried and used for fuel in various industry applications.

With so many advantages, it’s a wonder that more airplanes, trucks and cars aren’t running on the advanced biofuel today. Here’s the challenge: harvesting microalgae and transforming it into biofuel is currently very expensive. When companies can grow the right strains of algae on a large scale and at a good price, the commercialization of this sustainable biofuel will be well on its way.

To learn more about the production of algae products in Canada, visit Pond Technologies. Led by Peter Howard, the Carbon Cycler team is producing biodiesel, solid biofuel and other algae products.


Scientists Warn: Nine Climate Tipping Points Now ‘Active’ – Could Threaten the Existence of Human Civilization
More than half of the climate tipping points identified a decade ago are now “active,” a group of leading scientists have warned.
This threatens the loss of the Amazon rainforest and the great ice sheets of Antarctica and Greenland, which are currently undergoing measurable and unprecedented changes much earlier than expected.
This “cascade” of changes sparked by global warming could threaten the existence of human civilizations.
Evidence is mounting that these events are more likely and more interconnected than was previously thought, leading to a possible domino effect.
In an article published in the journal Nature on November 27, 2019, the scientists call for urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to prevent key tipping points, warning of a worst-case scenario of a “hothouse,” less habitable planet.
“A decade ago we identified a suite of potential tipping points in the Earth system, now we see evidence that over half of them have been activated,” said lead author Professor Tim Lenton, director of the Global Systems Institute at the University of Exeter.
“The growing threat of rapid, irreversible changes means it is no longer responsible to wait and see. The situation is urgent and we need an emergency response.”
Co-author Johan Rockström, director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, said: “It is not only human pressures on Earth that continue rising to unprecedented levels.
“It is also that as science advances, we must admit that we have underestimated the risks of unleashing irreversible changes, where the planet self-amplifies global warming.
“This is what we now start seeing, already at 1°C global warming.
“Scientifically, this provides strong evidence for declaring a state of planetary emergency, to unleash world action that accelerates the path towards a world that can continue evolving on a stable planet.”
In the commentary, the authors propose a formal way to calculate a planetary emergency as risk multiplied by urgency.
Tipping point risks are now much higher than earlier estimates, while urgency relates to how fast it takes to act to reduce risk.
Exiting the fossil fuel economy is unlikely before 2050, but with temperature already at 1.1°C above pre-industrial temperature, it is likely Earth will cross the 1.5°C guardrail by 2040. The authors conclude this alone defines an emergency.
Nine active tipping points:
1. Arctic sea ice
2. Greenland ice sheet
3. Boreal forests
4. Permafrost
5. Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation
6. Amazon rainforest
7. Warm-water corals
8. West Antarctic Ice Sheet
9. Parts of East Antarctica
The collapse of major ice sheets on Greenland, West Antarctica and part of East Antarctica would commit the world to around 10 meters of irreversible sea-level rise.
Reducing emissions could slow this process, allowing more time for low-lying populations to move.
The rainforests, permafrost, and boreal forests are examples of biosphere tipping points that if crossed result in the release of additional greenhouse gases amplifying warming.
Despite most countries having signed the Paris Agreement, pledging to keep global warming well below 2°C, current national emissions pledges — even if they are met — would lead to 3°C of warming.
Although future tipping points and the interplay between them is difficult to predict, the scientists argue: “If damaging tipping cascades can occur and a global tipping cannot be ruled out, then this is an existential threat to civilization.
“No amount of economic cost-benefit analysis is going to help us. We need to change our approach to the climate problem.”
Professor Lenton added: “We might already have crossed the threshold for a cascade of inter-related tipping points.
“However, the rate at which they progress, and therefore the risk they pose, can be reduced by cutting our emissions.”
Though global temperatures have fluctuated over millions of years, the authors say humans are now “forcing the system,” with atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration and global temperature increasing at rates that are an order of magnitude higher than at the end of the last ice age.
Reference: “Climate tipping points — too risky to bet against: The growing threat of abrupt and irreversible climate changes must compel political and economic action on emissions.” by Timothy M. Lenton, Johan Rockström, Owen Gaffney, Stefan Rahmstorf, Katherine Richardson, Will Steffen and Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, 27 November 2019, Nature.
DOI: 10.1038/d41586-019-03595-0
The latest UN Climate Change Conference will take place in Madrid from December 2-13.