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Canada's smart grid technology market is projected to reach $6.94 billion by 2020, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 17% from 2012, finds a new report from Zpryme.

The report says the electricity sector in Canada is expected to invest $293.8 billion from 2010 to 2030 to accommodate a changing generation mix and changing market requirements, as well as to replace or update aging assets. A key element of this will be continued investment in smart grid technology, which will not only improve energy efficiency and extend the life of existing infrastructure, but also help make Canada more competitive in the global economy, the report adds.

Zpryme says it has identified five key factors that are forcing change in the Canadian electricity industry: an aging infrastructure, climate change, jurisdictional complexity, a growing need for demand-side optimization, and the impending crisis of not having enough electric power engineers. Zpryme also concludes that developing the smart grid should be an urgent priority, as it holds great promise for addressing all five of these factors.

To illustrate, the report notes several initiatives have been taken across Canada to promote smart grid development. These include Hydro-Quebec’s decision to create a smart zone in Quebec; Hydro’s plan to install more than 1.8 million smart meters in British Columbia by the end of this year; and Ontario’s roll-out of 4.7 million smart meters to every homeowner and small business in the province.

(Ontario also recently announced it is accepting project applications for the next round of its Smart Grid Fund program. For more information, click here.)

The report says a number of demand response programs have also been introduced to encourage peak load reduction in the country, and alongside an extended use of microgrids, will help drive the market for demand response in Canada. Furthermore, the report says a growing market for battery-powered electric vehicles (due to rising environmental worries) is expected to help Canada adapt to smart grid technology.

“This market cannot be ignored with drivers such as Ontario phasing out coal-fired power plants next year coupled with Canada investing $293.8 billion in an energy mix overhaul,” comments Mark Ishac, managing director of Zpryme’s Smart Grid Insights practice. “Between the U.S. and Canada, North America is at the epicenter of smart grid investment.”

For more information about Zpryme’s report, click here.



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