Natural Resources Canada offers funding opportunities for renewable technology

Emerging technologies funding available now

In October 2017, the Canadian government earmarked $2.3 billion for the development, commercialization, and utilization of clean technologies. Open to mining companies, renewable and low-carbon technology providers, and remote communities across the country, the funding will help applicants integrate new initiatives for carbon reduction, helping reduce their reliance on fossil-fuel–based power.

Of this funding, $155 million over four years is earmarked for the Clean Growth in the Natural Resource Sectors Program, which will support clean technology research, development, and demonstration in mining, energy, and forestry.

“The program aims to advance emerging technologies toward commercial readiness, enabling natural resource operations to reduce their impacts on air, land, and water, enhancing competitiveness and creating jobs,” said Frank Des Rosiers, Assistant Deputy Minister of Innovation and Energy Technology with Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), in an interview for the Energy and Mines World Congress.

The 2017 Energy and Mines World Congress was held last month in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with the theme “Decarbonizing the Mining Sector.” NRCan representatives spoke about the subject at the event, providing more details on this new program. Investments like this support the Green Mining Initiative, which includes programs focusing on improving energy efficiency in mining for climate change mitigation, Des Rosiers said. The new Clean Growth Program is currently open for Letter of Interest submissions, with an anticipated deadline of February 7, 2018.

In addition to the Clean Growth Program is Green Infrastructure Phase II, in which one of the five programs is the Clean Energy for Remote Communities Program (CERC). “The government has committed to reducing reliance on diesel fuel in Canada’s remote, Northern, and Indigenous communities and industrial sites by supporting a transition to more sustainable energy solutions,” Des Rosiers explained. Mining companies could apply for funding for innovative demonstrations, including using solar, tidal, wind, and other renewable technology for demand reduction. Requests for proposals will open again soon.

 

How to use Carmanah products for your funding application

Carmanah provides complete solar-powered solutions that could become part of these initiatives, including:

Mining sites are typically located where grid-based lighting solutions are difficult to implement, making reliance on expensive diesel generators all too common. Carmanah’s products offer cost-effective, reliable solutions for even the most challenging conditions. They are durable and portable for changing onsite needs, with no in-ground wiring or complex setup required.

Carmanah has a proven success record of supplying lighting solutions for mines in Canada, including the Teck Highland Valley Copper mine near Logan Lake, British Columbia, the Suncor Fort Hills oil sands in the Athabasca region of Alberta, and Syncrude oil sands in Alberta.

Download our mining brochure to learn more about solutions that can help your mining site reduce its dependency on generators, then head over to NRCan to learn if you qualify and how to submit your project for funding.

Demystifying Obstruction Lighting During Wind Turbine Construction

What you need to know about the new Federal Administration Guidelines.

By Paul Longley, Sales Engineer, Carmanah Technologies

Statistically, wind turbines don’t cause many aviation accidents, but even one incident is more than enough to awaken builders to the absolute need to mark their turbines with obstruction lighting.

On a foggy day in April 2014, a private Piper airplane crashed into the blade of a wind turbine near Highmore, S.D., killing all four people on board. A National Transportation Safety Board investigation revealed the light on the turbine was not operational when the crash occurred. It was later revealed that the tower’s obstruction lighting had been inoperable for some time.

Since the 2007 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) guidelines for obstruction lighting were published, there has been an increase in the number of wind turbine installations. As more and more wind turbines are built throughout North America, they present an increasing hazard to low-flying aircraft, particularly in poor visibility. According to the Wind Turbine FAQs on the FAA Obstruction Evaluation/Airport Airspace Analysis website – oeaaa.faa.gov – the FAA is receiving over 1,000 wind turbine filings each month to clarify American Wind Energy Association reports that the annual capacity installations have been 5,000 MW or more every year since 2007, while it was half or less in all of the years preceding.

Since the 2007 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) guidelines for obstruction lighting were published, there has been an increase in the number of wind turbine installations. As more and more wind turbines are built throughout North America, they present an increasing hazard to low-flying aircraft, particularly in poor visibility. According to the Wind Turbine FAQs on the FAA Obstruction Evaluation/Airport Airspace Analysis website – oeaaa.faa.gov – the FAA is receiving over 1,000 wind turbine filings each month to clarify American Wind Energy Association reports that the annual capacity installations have been 5,000 MW or more every year since 2007, while it was half or less in all of the years preceding.

Lighting guidelines

Like other obstructions, such as radio antennas and electrical transmission towers, the FAA publishes guidance for wind turbine obstruction marking and lighting in its Advisory Circular (AC) 70/7460. The latest version, AC 70/7460-1L, was published Dec. 4, 2015, and has adopted some important new recommendations for wind turbines during their construction phase. In the previous 2007 version, AC 70/7460-1K, wind turbines under construction were to be lit using the same methods that apply to a permanent installation.

Like other obstructions, such as radio antennas and electrical transmission towers, the FAA publishes guidance for wind turbine obstruction marking and lighting in its Advisory Circular (AC) 70/7460. The latest version, AC 70/7460-1L, was published Dec. 4, 2015, and has adopted some important new recommendations for wind turbines during their construction phase. In the previous 2007 version, AC 70/7460-1K, wind turbines under construction were to be lit using the same methods that apply to a permanent installation.

The important guidelines that now apply to wind turbines under construction are summarized in the following:

  • Wind turbines under construction are now only required to be lit by 32.5 candela L-810 lighting rather than the full 2,000 candela of L-864 lighting. At less than a tenth of the power consumption, the L-810 fixtures are less expensive, smaller, lighter and easier to handle than L-864s, making their initial and subsequent installations much simpler as construction progresses upward;
  • The construction phase lights should be “steady burning,” which means the light is required to have a constant light signal. L-810s are, by definition, steady burning lights, whereas L-864s for permanent installations use a flashing pattern and all lights are synced to flash at the same time;
  • All turbines under construction should be lit once they reach 200 feet (61 meters). Once the wind turbine farm is complete, the brighter permanent lighting configuration allows for gaps, depending on the wind turbine farm configuration; and
  • If power is not available, the FAA recommends the light be solar-powered and “self-contained.” This means the LED light fixture, control electronics, batteries and solar panels should be encased in an all-in-one system as opposed to individual components bolted together with fasteners, cables and mounting brackets that tend to be bulky and exposed to the risk of breakage and corrosion. Power source options for temporary obstruction lighting include battery packs, fuel-powered generators and solar.

Overall, the new FAA changes for lighting construction-phase wind turbines provide a simpler and more cost-effective way to install temporary obstruction lighting while enhancing pilot safety at night. Always contact your local FAA office for information and guidance on how to fully ensure the compliance and safety of your project.

Read the article in North American Windpower

Preserving Ecology when Designing a Wind Farm

By Anthony Tisot

The evolution of renewable energy in the Galapagos Islands

As one of the world’s most unique and ecologically sensitive regions, the Galapagos Islands are a natural choice for green energy technology. To help preserve the delicate ecological balance of this
world heritage site, the government of Ecuador has embarked upon a mission to eliminate fossil fuel-based power production from the Galapagos archipelago by 2015.

As the first step in this initiative, the community of San Cristóbal is employing renewable energy technology as an environmentally friendly complement to the island’s existing diesel-powered generating plant. In 2007, San Cristóbal’s new wind energy facility came online as part of a hybrid wind-diesel solution, generating electricity for the island’s 6,000 inhabitants while reducing the
community’s diesel fuel consumption by half. Appropriately, even the flashing obstruction lights that sit atop the three giant wind turbines use renewable energy (in this case solar energy) as a
showcase of environmentally friendly technology at work.

Close up of a wind turbine and blue skyAdapting to life on the islands

Located on the equator some 600 miles from the coast of Ecuador, the Galapagos archipelago consists of 13 large islands and more than a hundred smaller islands, islets, and rocks that are home to
some of the world’s rarest birds and sea creatures. Although mariners have frequented the islands for 500 years, attempts to maintain self-sufficient communities in this remote location have historically proven challenging and, at times, problematic. Invasive plants and animals introduced intentionally or incidentally over the years have plagued the native species and threatened their habitats.

Ongoing efforts to restore and protect the region’s ecological balance have seen some success but, in recent years, a new threat emerged as the growing communities and expanding tourist trade demanded ever-more energy from the region’s existing diesel-based power generation facilities. To reduce diesel consumption, while ensuring a reliable power supply in all seasons, the
project’s three massive wind turbines would work in conjunction with San Cristóbal’s existing 650 kilowatt diesel generators. Together, this hybrid wind-diesel system would fulfill the
island’s power requirements while reducing CO2 emissions by an estimated 2,800 tons per year and cutting diesel fuel shipments by fifty percent.

A solar-powered lighting solution

With two airports in the vicinity, effective obstruction markers were a necessity on the three 50-meter tall structures; although, as lighting can sometimes prove hazardous to birds, these
too were chosen with care. For this project, Made Tecnologías Renovables selected a set of solar-powered LED (light emitting diode) obstruction lights from Canadian manufacturer
Carmanah Technologies Corporation. Initially designed for the United States Air Force and approved for use in the Galapagos by the Ecuadorian Aviation Authority, the solar-powered obstruction
lights were found to be an effective and environmentally friendly lighting solution.

Suitable for locations with limited access to sunlight, the stand-alone beacons require just 1.5 hours of sunlight per day to operate effectively—a valuable asset in an area where seasonal conditions
can result in a thick, persistent fog at higher elevations. Another benefit was the lights’ ability to endure vibration and buffeting from the elements while shielding all components—
solar modules, batteries, LEDs, and electronics—within a compact and durable enclosure.

Read the full story here >>