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Alberta government launches panel for energy efficiency advice

Alberta Environment Minister Shannon Phillips announces the establishment of a energy efficiency panel, Thursday, June 9, 2016.
Alberta Environment Minister Shannon Phillips announces the establishment of a energy efficiency panel, Thursday, June 9, 2016. Tom Vernon, Global News

A panel has been formed to provide the Alberta government advice on energy efficiency programs.

The Energy Efficiency Advisory Panel will give advice in the fall about the types energy savings programs the government should offer in the short and medium-term.

“Alberta is the only province in Canada without consumer energy efficiency programs – that’s not leadership. Advice from the Energy Efficiency Advisory Panel will result in real and credible options for Alberta and programming that will help people reduce their energy use and support our transition to renewable energy,” Environment Minister Shannon Phillips said.

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The government said the recommended programs and services will be in place early next year.

The advisory panel will be chaired by Dr. David Wheeler. Wheeler has previously chaired similar public discussion panels in Nova Scotia.

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The panel will speak to Albertans, Indigenous organizations and stakeholders before making the recommendations.

The government said improving energy efficiency is critical because it lowers cost, decreases greenhouse gas emissions and reduces local air pollutants. It also creates jobs in sectors that include skilled trades, construction, retail sales, professional and manufacturing, the government added.