Power Up
Dec. 25, 2014

20. U.S. to Canada wind storage transmission line plans submitted
Wind Power Monthly
April 24, 2014: Minnesota Power has submitted its plans to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission for approval and also applied for a presidential permit from the U.S. Department of Energy. The 500kV Great Northern Transmission Line would cross the Minnesota-Manitoba border carrying power from wind into Canada for storage through pumped hydro. Power will then be transported along the 350-kilometre route back into the U.S. at times of high demand to an electric sub-station on the Mesabi Iron Range in the north of the country. More

19. Manitoba adopts higher energy efficient standards
May 1, 2014: Manitoba is among the first provinces to adopt new energy efficient standards for new, large buildings. The province announced recently that Manitoba will adopt the National Energy Code for Buildings 2011. The adoption of new standards means changes to building insulation, lighting, heating, ventilation and HVAC systems, water heating and electrical systems. More

18. Plug pulled on wind farm
Winnipeg Free Press
April 10, 2014: The plug has been pulled on a proposed 175-megawatt wind farm near Manitou that would add more alternative energy to Manitoba and be a boon to farmers, a U.S. firm said. "There's no prospective view of any future wind farms to be built in the province," said Ed Pakulak, the Canadian spokesman for U.S.-based Competitive Power Ventures (CPV). "The focus is hydroelectric power." More

17. A rechargeable LED cork that turns empty bottles into lamps
Feb. 20, 2014: For many of us it will still be a few months before dinner parties on the back patio are feasible again — but there's no reason you can't start preparing now with a $15 LED cork. Popping off the faux cork top reveals a standard USB connector for charging off AC adapters or your computer, and with a simple twist the bright white LED can be turned on or off. More

16. Contractor on prestigious list
Winnipeg Free Press
April 10, 2014: A Winnipeg design-build contractor whose revenue has grown 60 to 70 per cent in the last seven years is the only Manitoba company named to Canada's Best Managed Companies list for 2013. FWS Group of Companies was among 47 firms named to this year's list, considered one of the country's premier business awards programs. More

15. Photos: Bear naps atop a SaskPower pole
Huffington Post
June 5, 2014: Talk about a power nap! Saskatchewan's electrical utility was alerted about a bear that had climbed to the top of one of its poles near the Town of Shellbrook recently, Metro News reported. Crews arrived to find the bear making himself comfortable atop the pole and eventually falling asleep, SaskPower spokesman Tyler Hopson told the newspaper. More

14. Hydro converting street lights to new energy-efficient LEDs
Brandon Sun
June 19, 2014: New energy-efficient street lights will be installed along Manitoba roadways as another way to conserve electricity. Stan Struthers, minister responsible for Manitoba Hydro, said the first lights will be installed on Queens Avenue East in Brandon under Hydro's Power Smart LED Roadway Lighting Conversion Program. More

13. Sugar-powered batteries could overtake chemical batteries
Jan. 30, 2014: New research into sugar solutions at Virginia Tech University has given rise to speculation that sugar-powered batteries could be set to replace today's chemically-powered batteries in as little as three years. The research conducted at Virginia Tech has resulted in a break-through in harnessing the energy that is stored in natural sugars, with the research team claiming that their sugar-based battery can store up to 10 times more energy than its chemical equivalent can. More

12. Winnipeg buying waterproof covers to fix malfunctioning traffic lights
Winnipeg Sun
Feb. 27, 2014: Shortly after dozens of traffic lights malfunctioned due to moisture, city officials have announced plans to install waterproof gel covers on them to prevent it from happening again. Officials said the city has been experiencing an "unusual increase" in flashing traffic signals for the past several of years, specifically during heavy rain, snowstorms, and fast-rising temperatures during winter. The problem is excessive moisture around electrical components inside the signal poles are shorting out the lights. More

11. Federal ban ignites rush on old-style light bulbs
CBC News
Jan. 9, 2014: Some Winnipeggers are stocking up on standard light bulbs after a federal ban went into effect recently. The ban, aimed at improving efficiency, means light bulb manufacturers can no longer supply the Canadian market with 75-watt and 100-watt incandescent bulbs. Retailers, however, can sell whatever stock they have left. The 40-watt and 60-watt incandescent bulbs have one more year before they are added to the banned list. More