March 16

How Does BC Compare to Germany and Other Countries for Solar Power Generation?


How Does BC Compare to Germany and Other Countries for Solar Power Generation?

It’s time for Canadians and British Columbians to step up their solar energy game.


As of December 2017, Canada produces 18.9% of total energy from renewable sources (Natural Resources Canada), with water being the largest producer, but wind and solar being the fastest growing.

Natural Resources Canada believes there is incredible solar potential for many cities across Canada, “About half of Canada’s residential electricity requirements could be met by installing solar panels on the roofs of residential buildings.”


Yet the National Energy Board released a report in December (2017) showing that solar energy only accounts for 0.5% of electricity generated within Canada.

That’s a lot less than half.

Where does Canada fall in the battle for solar energy supremacy? You’ll be surprised to learn we’re in 13th place. In the world.

To give you a basis for comparison, Italy harnesses 7.5%, Germany stands at 6.7%, Japan is at 4.9%. Even the U.S. (1.4%) and China (1.07%) beat out Canada in solar energy production. (CBC December 2017)

According to the Strom Report, as of 2016, Germany had 1.58M solar power systems installed totaling 5.9% of total energy generation for the country. CNBC reported that renewables made up 29% of the country’s gross electricity generation in 2016.

On April 30, 2017, Germany broke another record: 85% of all electricity being consumed in the country came from renewable energy (wind, solar, biomass, hydroelectric power).

So why aren’t we doing more? As Canadians? As British Columbians?


BC Hydro created a Net Metering program to help offset your overall electricity bills. How does it work? If you own or lease solar panels, and they’re connected back to the BC-grid, whatever solar energy you harness that exceeds your needs, you can sell back to BC Hydro, you get paid in the form of energy credits so that when you need a little extra energy or for those dreary, sunless winters, you can use your credits to pay for electricity the old-fashioned way.


So, if you’re thinking about installing solar panels for your home, now is the best time to jump on board the environmental bandwagon.


The cost of residential solar panel installations is about one-tenth what it was in 2000 in its infancy, making it a much more affordable and environmentally-friendly energy option for British Columbians.


Check out our last story on BC net metering.





As of December 2017, Canada was 13th in the world for solar energy. It’s time for Canadians and British Columbians to step up their solar energy game!





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About the Author

Mark Tadros

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