2020-2021 Energy Initiatives Report
The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) has released its 2020-2021 Energy Initiatives Report. A French Minister’s Statement and Executive Summary is included in the document.
The 2020-2021 Energy Initiatives Report is a high-level review of the Northwest Territories’ current energy situation, and details key energy actions and initiatives that have been undertaken by the GNWT and its partners over the past year. All of these actions and initiatives fall under the 2030 Energy Strategy, which sets out the GNWT’s long-term vision for transitioning to a lower-carbon economy, and the three-year Energy Action Plan, which details the actions and initiatives to be undertaken to implement the Strategy.
To view the 2020-2021 Energy Initiatives Report, click here.
Questions and Answers:
1. How is the Energy Initiatives Report linked to the 2030 Energy Strategy and the Energy Action Plan?
The Government of Northwest Territories (GNWT) has created a 2030 Energy Strategy with six Strategic Objectives, designed to move the NWT towards a lower-carbon future. This strategy supports and demonstrates the GNWT commitment to achieving its vision for NWT energy for 2030.
The three-year Energy Action Plan supports the 2030 Energy Strategy by setting annual goals/initiatives that will help the GWNT and its partners achieve its six Strategic Objectives (outlined in the Energy Strategy).
The Energy Initiatives Report is released annually, providing a review of the NWT’s current energy situation and key initiatives undertaken throughout the year, linking those actions to the 2030 Energy Strategy and Energy Action Plan.
2. Who is responsible for rolling out the initiatives under the 2030 Energy Strategy?
Responsibility for implementing the strategy is shared between the GNWT, the Northwest Territories Power Corporation and the Arctic Energy Alliance. GNWT also works with communities and Indigenous partners across the NWT on shared objectives that advance the Strategy.
3. What is the GNWT doing to decrease energy costs for NWT residents?
NWT’s energy supply is highly dependent on imported fossil fuels, such as diesel and gasoline, and with long, cold, dark winters, residents and businesses must increase the amount of energy needed to stay safe and comfortable. This leads to high costs.
The GNWT is committed to an energy system that contributes to the territory’s economic, social and environmental well-being, while doing our part to transition to a lower-carbon economy.
In 2020-2021, the GNWT and its partners made $38 million in energy-related investments to stabilize energy costs for NWT residents and move towards a low-carbon future. For information on these initiatives, click here to view our 2020-2021 Energy Initiatives Report.
4. Are all of the initiatives under the 2030 Energy Strategy designed to reduce GHG emissions?
Although many of the initiatives under the 2030 Energy Strategy reduce GHG emissions, not all of them contribute to GHG reductions. Producing resilient, reliable and locally-produced energy is critical as even a short interruption in energy supply can quickly become a public emergency in our cold climate.
The GNWT weighs the following factors when making decisions about energy initiatives:
- Community and Indigenous engagement
- Energy affordability
- Energy security and reliability
- Energy sustainability
- Optimization of existing resources
- Project complexity
- Stakeholder interest
- Federal funding opportunities
- Capacity within a sector to achieve a successful result
5. How did the COVID-19 pandemic impact the rollout of energy initiatives?
During the COVID-19 pandemic, the GNWT understood spending needed to be re-examined on an ongoing basis. The pandemic did impact investment in energy initiatives and caused delays in some projects. Despite the challenges, the GNWT and its partners in 2020-2021 spent over $38 million on energy projects and initiatives across the NWT.
While the Public Health Emergency has ended, COVID-19 is still with us and it’s possible the virus – along with global factors beyond the GNWT’s control – may continue to impact the delivery of projects, programs and services in the future.
The GNWT will monitor this and plan for it and continue to move forward to complete project milestones identified in our Energy Action Plan, and in turn meet our goal to transition the NWT to a lower carbon economy, build a sustainable energy system and strengthen our understanding of the short-term and long-term effects of climate change.
For information on some of the initiatives completed in 2020 and 2021, view our 2020-2021 Energy Initiatives Report.
6. What is the GNWT doing to address climate change?
Addressing climate change is a priority for the GNWT and it is part of the Mandate of the Government of the Northwest Territories (2019-2023).
The 2030 NWT Climate Change Strategic Framework and 2019-2023 Climate Change Action Plan lay out the GNWT’s comprehensive and coordinated response to climate change, outlining a long-term approach to developing a strong, healthy economy that is less dependent on fossil fuels; increasing our understanding of the impacts of climate change; and improving our ability to build resilience and adapt to a changing climate.
The framework is directly linked to the 2030 Energy Strategy, which is the primary mechanism that government will be using to decrease the NWT's dependency on fossil fuels, leading to reduced greenhouse gas emissions. The framework and action plan are being implemented along with the 2030 Energy Strategy and NWT Carbon Tax.
To learn more about the GNWT’s integrated approach to addressing climate change, visit the Department of Environment and Natural Resources.