Power Up
Apr. 2, 2015

Alberta budget to include more taxes, reveals $5 billion deficit over next year
The Globe and Mail
The Alberta government is asking residents to pay more taxes and receive fewer services for years to come. The province will post a record $5 billion deficit over the next year, reflecting a global collapse in oil prices that has depressed Alberta's revenue and sent the provincial economy spiralling.More

Buildex keynote: Construction forging ahead in Alberta despite low oil prices
Journal of Commerce
Despite the latest crash in oil prices and dire predictions for a construction industry slowdown in Alberta, Construction Keynote speakers at this year's Buildex Edmonton showed they're bravely forging ahead. "It's a tough business, but it's the best business in the world," said Bob Walker, senior vice president in Alberta for Ledcor.More

Edmonton building wins award from solar association
Edmonton Journal
An innovative Edmonton office building has been named Solar PV (photovoltaic) Project of the Year by CanSIA, the national solar-energy industry association. The Mosaic Centre for Conscious Community and Commerce at 2003 91st Street SW was built by Dennis and Christy Cuku, owners of the Mosaic Family of Companies. The 30,000-square-foot centre is the world's most northerly net-zero energy commercial building and Edmonton's first LEED Platinum commercial building.More

Industry, researchers attend University of Alberta smart-grid workshop
Beacon News
With a strong and growing core of researchers and industrial partners focusing on smart grid technologies and power electronics, the University of Alberta Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering recently hosted a smart-grid workshop with an international slate of leading researchers and industry representatives. More

Power usage drops in Edmonton for Earth Hour
Edmonton Sun
Edmonton dimmed down for Earth Hour — sort of. EPCOR spokesperson Tim LeRiche confirmed that the city's electricity usage did drop during Earth Hour, compared to the previous week. However, much of the 6.3 per cent decline in usage can likely be attributed to a huge change in weather, as well as the lack of an Edmonton Oilers home game.More

Solar glass: Power generation you can see through
Brock Press
Researchers at Michigan State University (MSU) are developing the next breakthrough in solar power technology and its incorporation into both consumer products and architecture. Other iterations of "solar glass" are out there, but are limited in that light absorption through the material gives it a coloured tint and produces a shadow. If brought to market, MSU's innovation removes a practicality barrier with its transparent luminescent solar concentrator.More

Emissions file needs more energy
The Leader-Post
Saskatchewan has been more strategic about mitigating climate change than many people recognize, but its cities can cut emissions even further while saving tax-payers money. Alberta and Saskatchewan have each committed to spend approximately $1.3 billion on carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology. Saskatchewan's investment in post-combustion technology should be portable to places like China, while Alberta's specialized CCS technology is unlikely to be transferable. More

Evolution of LEED looks at building materials' transparency
Daily Commercial News
The next LEED certification (version 4) will require more transparency from manufacturers of the materials used to construct buildings. They will have to submit Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) outlining their products constituents and how they affect the product's environmental performance. More

Scams increasing as Calgary economy takes a downturn
Calgary Herald
Scams targeting city businesses are taking off as the provincial economy stumbles. Amane Kanai, who operates three Globefish restaurants and a new Ramen establishment in Calgary, was the recent mark of fraudsters who posed as Enmax officials. Calls to each of his businesses warned Kanai that he had 15 minutes to pay overdue bills or the power would be shut off. More

Trades Alberta: Working on downtown arena exciting gig for skilled tradespeople
Edmonton Journal
On a recent morning, nearly a year to the day since construction began on Rogers Place, the downtown arena site buzzed with activity. For the many tradespeople working on site for construction contractor PCL, it's an exciting place to be. "It's not every day you get to work on an arena, nonetheless your own hometown team's arena," said Karl MacKenzie, a carpenter for PCL Builders. More

Report: Investments in renewable energy climb 17 per cent in 2014
The Globe and Mail
Worldwide investments in renewable energy projects rose by 17 per cent in 2014 thanks to a boom in solar in Asia and offshore wind in Europe. Total spending reached $270 billion last year, up from $232 billion in 2013, according to a report released recently by the United Nations Environment Program. That reverses a two-year decline.More