Alberta’s Gassy and Power Companies Don’t Mind

Will the transition to natural gas have a meaningful impact on Canada’s climate goals?


What's up

Alberta’s largest power generators – ATCO, Capital Power and TransAlta – have announced they will be phasing out their coal fired power plants and converting to lower-emitting natural gas by 2020. With Alberta’s announced green initiatives, power companies have until 2030 to phase out all coal plants, but these companies are 10 years ahead of the deadline.

Broken down

Why the sudden transition to greener natural gas you may be wondering? Well, Alberta’s NDP government has made it their mission to reduce emissions by implementing a carbon tax, incentivising companies to make the switch. Natural gas, on average, emits about 50% less emissions compared to coal and is reliable, efficient, and abundant in Alberta.  

Broken down even more.

Never before has this switch been so feasible for power companies. With Alberta’s natural gas market oversupplied due to lack of demand and market access, prices have remained considerably low. Now more than ever the transition from coal to natural gas is economically feasible, inviting eager power generators to hop on the low-emissions band wagon before the 2030 deadline.

Will the transition to natural gas have a meaningful impact on Canada’s climate goals?