Recently, the Government of Alberta appointed the following panel members to the Energy Efficiency Advisory Panel: Dr. David Wheeler, Chair (President and Vice Chancellor, Cape Breton University), Michele Aasgard (Executive Director of Alberta Community and Co-operative Association), Desmond Bull (Councillor for the Louis Bull Tribe of the Maskwacis Nation), Tanya Doran (Senior Sustainability Lead – Alberta for Stantec), Roni-Sue Moran (Director of Industry Relations Corporation), Jesse Row (Founder and Executive Director for Alberta Energy Efficiency Alliance) and Marc Huot (Technical Advisor from the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre). In concert with establishing the Panel, the Government of Alberta has included in its recent Bill 20 – Climate Leadership Implementation Act, establishment of Energy Efficiency Alberta as the Crown corporation intended to deliver programs and services promoting energy efficiency and small scale renewable electricity projects.

The mandate of the Panel is to seek input on how to promote energy efficiency and community energy systems across multiple areas in Alberta, including, among others: Indigenous communities, programs for micro-generation and programs for small-scale alternative and renewable energy generation. Investment in energy efficiency programs is intended to help reduce energy and associated costs, greenhouse gas emissions and support green jobs. The Panel is to make recommendations on the types of energy saving programs that can be developed in the short and medium-term, as well as help set out a long-term vision.

The Panel will engage the public, Indigenous communities, non-profit organizations and stakeholders in order to better understand the needs and wants of Albertans so that the new programs will deliver the desired outcomes of the Climate Leadership Plan. Such outcomes, however, must reflect: available funding, cost-effectiveness, greatest impact of greenhouse gas reductions, energy savings, cost savings, renewable energy generation, green job creation and economic diversification.

The Panel will produce a report to the Minister responsible for the Climate Change Office in Fall 2016 with a goal of launching the first energy efficiency programs in early 2017.