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Reality Check

RC-15: Is Manitoba Energy Efficient?

Date Posted: June 18, 2011

Manitoba Hydro, Manitoba's public owned utility, delivered 20.5 million kilowatt-hours (KWh) of electricity to Manitobans in 2010, excluding exports. This equals 16,700 KWh per capita energy consumed by Manitoba's 1.23 million people. This is slightly below the Canadian average of 17,053 KWh per capita consumption, but well above Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) per capita average of 8, 486 KWh.

Manitoba Hydro and the Manitoba government have implemented energy efficiency programs over the past few years, including: Manitoba Hydro Power Smart Savings, Rebates, and Loans; geo-thermal incentives and loan support; funding for solar water heaters; lower income energy efficiency programs; etc.

Residential demand per customer for both electricity and natural gas has remained relatively stable, with per customer demand tapering slightly between 2001 and 2006 before trending back up until 2009. Demand from general service electrical customers and industrial natural gas users declines approximately 10%, and 50% respectively (see Tables & Graphs). Natural gas is imported. Electricity is generated by Manitoba Hydro damns. The 2008 recession may have caused industrial natural gas use declines.

Manitobans only consume about 60% of the electrical energy produced by Manitoba Hydro; the other 40% is exported. Energy efficiency programs free up electrical energy for export. Revenues from energy exports support debt costs for generation and transmission projects, and subsidize the cost of electricity in Manitoba.

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