The year started off on a high note at the Energy Futures Lab (EFL). On February 1 & 2, EFL Fellows reconnected in Red Deer for a 1.5-day workshop. This workshop was an opportunity for current and new Fellows to meet for the first time. It was also a timely occasion to collectively evaluate changes in the energy system, to review cultural shifts in the surrounding environment and to further advance Fellow-driven initiatives.
2016 was a year of change and new realities. It ended with national and international developments that will impact Alberta’s energy system for years to come.
On December 5, 2016, approximately 170 people braved the cold to talk about the future of energy in Alberta at the University of Calgary’s downtown campus.Dr. David Layzell, Energy Futures Lab (EFL) Steering Committee Member and Director of the Canadian Energy Systems Analysis Research (CESAR) project, argued that energy system transition is the “grand challenge for our society.”
No one ever said the transition to a new energy economy would be easy. From the very beginning, The Natural Step Canada (TNSC) was under a great deal of pressure to describe the impacts and outcomes of the Energy Futures Lab (EFL). We resisted prescribing a solution.
Navigating the interconnected web of issues surrounding energy, climate change and sustainable development is a complex task. Over the past year and a half, the Energy Futures Lab (EFL) has developed a platform for constructive dialogue and game-changing innovation.
Leaders from government, business, not-for-profit, academia and indigenous communities will gather in Calgary for a special two-day event on October 19 and 20. Their objective: to share proposed solutions for solving Alberta’s most complex and pressing energy challenges.
Building systems that are fit for the future means beginning with the end in mind and working together with unlikely allies. Our greatest challenges can only be addressed if we learn to do so.
The Energy Futures Lab is all about transitioning Alberta’s energy system for a sustainable future. But what do we mean by the “energy system” exactly? Are we talking about oil and gas or renewables or both? What about the electricity generation and transmission infrastructure? All of those are part of the system. But those are talking about physical things, raw materials and their transportation. What about how we actually use energy?
Energy Futures Lab Director Chad Park speaks to GLOBE 2016 attendees at the Walrus Talks Energy event. Chad’s talk challenges the simplistic approach of ‘with us or against us’ debates, and calls for new dialogue to enable the transition to a carbon competitive economy.