- While Canada's most popular industry event, the ETC, is smaller in scale than last month's RE+ event in Anaheim, it was well-attended and busy.
- As in the U.S., the Canadian market has experienced hiccups along the way.
- The biggest issue its currently facing is talent acquisition.
Last week, I was in Toronto for my first Electricity Transformation Canada (ETC).
For those who are unfamiliar with the Canadian market, the Canadian Renewable Energy Association (CanREA) was established in 2020 when the Canadian Solar Industries Association (CanSIA) merged with the Canadian Wind Energy Association (CanWEA) and is the host of the ETC.
The inaugural ETC event was scheduled to take place in 2020 but was postponed by the pandemic, and then I sat out the 2021 event. The 2022 ETC gathering was the first event in partnership with the RE+ brand for promotion.
While it is smaller in scale than last month’s RE+ event in Anaheim, it was well-attended and busy.
As in the U.S., the Canadian markets have experienced hiccups along the way.
The solar industry hasn’t fully recovered from the ending of the Ontario feed-in tariff, but there’s renewed optimism.
The Government of Ontario has released a procurement tender of 1.5GW for energy storage projects within the province. The Government of Alberta has also created Alberta Clean Electricity to help achieve a 30% renewable energy generation goal by 2030.
In addition, the federal government has issued a National Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) program. These tradable commodities can be sold (one REC for every megawatt hour created) by the generators.
All this positive news helped make the 2022 ETC Conference full of optimism!
Industry Problems in Canada
While the scale differs from the U.S. market, the same industry problems exist in Canada.
In talking with one manufacturer at ETC, megawatts of their rooftop projects in Canada were derailed due to a single mounting screw that had been held up in supply chain purgatory.
But the biggest issue the Canadian industry currently faces is talent acquisition.
On Thursday, along with 500 other industry professionals, I joined the plenary luncheon titled Canada’s Workforce for the Electricity System of the Future, moderated by Liberty Power’s Ian MacRobbie.
So obviously, ours is a major topic given its platform at ETC!
The talk focused on problems the industry confronts in speedily hiring the right talent in a fast-growing industry in a tight job market.
The diverse panellists offered creative solutions, including immigration, cross-training non-industry professionals, and early education.
Walking the expo floor, I heard most companies echo the challenges in achieving their hiring goals.
EnergeiaWorks is a clean energy recruitment leader in the US and Canada, so we welcome you to contact us to discuss your recruitment strategy during this tough time.